CREDO action: Tell California Attorney General Xavier Becerra: Investigate Exxon This petition will be delivered to California Attorney General Xavier Becerra: Join the investigation into Exxon’s possible climate fraud.
Exxon Mobil’s own scientists told executives about the company’s role in causing climate change as far back as the 1970s. Instead of acting on that information, Exxon funded a decades-long disinformation campaign that helped create today’s dangerous climate denial. All the while, Exxon kept drilling and selling the product it knew was driving the world closer to disaster.
Several states are investigating what Exxon knew and what it told its shareholders and the public, and they have started to raise serious questions. Just this week, investigators reported that when Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was Exxon’s CEO, he used an alias email address in climate change discussions, calling himself “Wayne Tracker.”
There’s more to this story, but the investigating states need support to uncover Exxon’s past behavior. California has the badly needed resources to aid in the investigations, but so far Attorney General Xavier Becerra hasn’t publicly committed to join. With enough support from Californians, we can pressure Attorney General Becerra to join the investigation.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey are leading the effort to uncover what Exxon knew, but the oil giant is fighting back hard. Exxon filed lawsuits against both attorneys general, and House science committee chair Lamar Smith, a well-known climate change denier and fossil fuel industry ally, issued subpoenas against both as well.
California is well-positioned to join the fight. When Gov. Jerry Brown announced Becerra as his pick for attorney general, he specifically called out the importance of climate, saying “I’m confident he will be a champion for all Californians and help our state aggressively combat climate change.” In fact, the Los Angeles Times reported that former California Attorney General Kamala Harris was already investigating before she left office, but there’s been no recent news from the attorney general’s office.
Last month, 18 of California’s delegates to the U.S. House of Representatives wrote to Attorney General Becerra to ask him to continue the investigation into Exxon. By adding our voices, we can amplify their call and let Attorney General Becerra know that Californians care about climate accountability.