ExxonMobil Departure From Climate-Denying ALEC Long Overdue

Statement by Kathy Mulvey, Union of Concerned Scientists

Published Jul 12, 2018

WASHINGTON (July 12, 2018)—ExxonMobil announced today its decision to quit the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a corporate lobby group that has drafted sample legislation that would inhibit state Clean Power Plan implementation, eliminate state incentives for electric vehicles, hamper the solar industry from selling electricity directly to homes and businesses, and restrict investment in wind and solar.

The announcement comes after ExxonMobil opposed a draft ALEC resolution last year that encouraged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to challenge its science-based endangerment finding that requires agency action on greenhouse gas emissions.

Below is a statement by Kathy Mulvey, fossil fuel accountability campaign director at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

“ExxonMobil finally responded to demands from our organization and others—including its own shareholders—to break with ALEC over the group’s deceptive tactics. Over the last 20 years, the company has given ALEC more than $1.8 million, part of the $34.6 million it has spent to deceive the public about the reality and seriousness of climate change.

“But the company has a lot more to do to set things straight. It continues to spend a million dollars a year on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which refused as recently as 2014 to acknowledge that global warming is caused by human activity and funded a 2017 report attacking the Paris climate agreement. ExxonMobil also is on the board of the National Association of Manufacturers, which in recent months has targeted individuals, groups and communities—including UCS, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and California municipalities—that have gone to court to hold major fossil fuel companies accountable for their contributions to climate change. 

“Other major oil companies, including BP, Royal Dutch Shell and ConocoPhillips, left ALEC years ago. It’s about time ExxonMobil finally did, too.”