By Ben Geman - 02/19/10 02:36 AM EST
Al Gore used Twitter Thursday to allege that oil giant Exxon Mobil has lied about its commitment not to fund organizations that dispute the science behind global warming.
“No surprise. Exxon lies about pledge not to fund climate deniers,” the former vice president tweeted.
Gore, however, cited a story this month in the UK’s Independent that described Exxon's funding of such groups.
“Free-market, anti-climate change think-tanks such as the Atlas Economic Research Foundation in the US and the International Policy Network in the UK have received grants totalling hundreds of thousands of pounds from the multinational energy company ExxonMobil. Both organisations have funded international seminars pulling together climate change deniers from across the globe,” the paper reported.
Climate advocates have had a rough few months – the weak Copenhagen deal, the now-infamous hacked climate science emails and even the DC snowstorms have put them on the defensive.
But some prominent advocates are trying to hit back this week. Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), who’s struggling to shepherd a climate bill through Congress, on Thursday said that “fanatics, naysayers, and science deniers” would not block international action on global warming.
Energy Secretary Steven Chu this week defended the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – which climate skeptics have vigorously attacked – and said its findings are too modest if anything. “I’ve actually always felt that they were taking a somewhat conservative stand on many issues and for justifiable reasons,” Chu said in an interview Tuesday with the Financial Times.