Baltimore Big Oil Climate Lawsuit Moves Forward

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

h/t Dr. Willie Soon; As Baltimore’s misleading marketing case against big oil moves forward, Big Oil may be about to pay a heavy price for their inconsistent positioning on climate narratives.

Lawsuit alleging oil companies misled public about climate change moves forward

January 25, 20224:55 PM ET REBECCA HERSHER

A federal appeals court in Virginia heard a landmark case Tuesday that seeks to hold major fossil fuel companies accountable for their role in climate change. The court’s decision in the case will have implications for a raft of similar cases brought by cities, counties and states across the country.

The Supreme Court considered the jurisdiction question in the Baltimore case last year, and decided that a federal appeals court should decide where the Baltimore lawsuit is heard, paving the way for today’s arguments before a three-judge panel for the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

In his statement on behalf of oil and gas companies, attorney Kannon Shanmugam argued that state court is the wrong place for the lawsuit because climate change is global in scope, and is regulated by the federal government and by international agreements. 

Karen Sokol, a law professor at Loyola University New Orleans who studies climate liability cases, says that argument doesn’t hold water, because the allegations against the companies hinge on state laws that are meant to protect the public from misleading marketing.

Baltimore is asking state courts to weigh in on what Sokol calls a “long-standing, systematic deceptive marketing campaign designed to hide the catastrophic dangers,” of fossil fuels. Cases about consumer protection, including landmark lawsuits involving alleged corporate misinformation campaigns by tobacco companies, have historically been tried in state court.

Read more: https://www.npr.org/2021/01/19/956005206/supreme-court-considers-baltimore-suit-against-oil-companies

I’m not a legal expert, but the issue appears to be that oil companies have admitted their product causes dangerous climate change. Instead of continuing to vigorously challenge alarmist narratives, they mostly went soft and tried to be everyone’s friend.

Now there is a real risk oil company’s own words could be used to hang them. Plaintiffs have plenty of material to quote, like public statements by oil companies saying they support the Paris Agreement will be contrasted with historical statements and publicity campaigns which appear to downplay the alleged climate crisis, and old internal documents like the 1982 Glasser memo, in which oil company scientists made alarming statements about climate change.

Oil companies are pleading that if they lose, it could threaten US energy security. But Baltimore has a severe debt crisis, and Baltimore politicians just awarded themselves a pay rise, so I’m guessing other people’s financial problems are not their top priority.

If oil companies had stood up to the climate bullies and their flimsy science right from the start, instead of attempting to finesse the situation by being everyone’s friend, they likely wouldn’t be in this mess.

Oil companies might claim they were sincere in their opposition to climate narratives, but realised their mistake and changed their minds, but if they take this line they will need some compelling arguments for why they thought it was OK to ignore internal warnings like the 1982 Glasser memo. Though having said that, my reading is Glasser was not an unequivocal warning that climate change was a problem.

The oil companies have not lost yet, but in my opinion their PR blunders and actions may have created a real problem for them, and a significant risk of serious financial loss.

5 19 votes
Article Rating
75 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Mike Jonas(@egrey1)
Editor
January 26, 2022 6:18 pm

“If oil companies had stood up to the climate bullies and their flimsy science right from the start, instead of attempting to finesse the situation by being everyone’s friend, they likely wouldn’t be in this mess.”.

+42

The appeasing oil company wimps deserve to lose, but the other side most certainly don’t deserve to win. It might be a good idea if the oil company lawyers demanded that the other side prove that climate change had caused actual losses (and lined up some real scientists to tear the claims to shreds). Otherwise, if the oil companies lose the case, ordinary citizens are going to be have their lives destroyed to an extent that hasn’t been seen since Mao Tse Tung.

Bryan A
Reply to  Mike Jonas
January 26, 2022 6:43 pm

Stop selling Gasoline, Diesel or Natural Gas within City Limits post haste

John
Reply to  Bryan A
January 26, 2022 9:03 pm

better still stop the tax money going to Baltimore

Barry James
Reply to  Bryan A
January 26, 2022 10:09 pm

Yep. Stop supplying these bullies with all fossil fuels and their associated products like plastics and medicines. Let’s see how long it takes for them to realise that they also get hurt by their idiotic demands.

Bill Powers
Reply to  Barry James
January 27, 2022 7:18 am

Hurt is too mild a term for these bureaucrats. The citizens would light their torches and grab their pitchforks. It wouldn’t be effigies of politicians and bureaucrats hanging from ropes. There wouldn’t be enough rope considering the volume of heads. it would be more efficient to build a guillotine outside city hall.

Kevin kilty
Reply to  Mike Jonas
January 26, 2022 6:49 pm

Oil companies do not deserve to lose nearly as much as the corrupt Baltimore politicians do. If Baltimore wins then expect a universal assault on all private assets. Politicians, especially those with a D following their names, have no capacity to tame their spending, along with an adolescent understanding about wealth. They need new and vast sources of revenue as growth of the economy and rising tax rates are insufficient.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  Mike Jonas
January 26, 2022 8:17 pm

“The appeasing oil company wimps deserve to lose…”

Absolutely right. Progressivism is effectively fascism, and as the founders and protectors of the administrative (deep) state, the Democrats have nearly unlimited regulatory power to punish or reward corporations. Think about it – if you’re a shop keeper, who are you more afraid of, your customers or the mob?

Brad-DXT
Reply to  Mike Jonas
January 26, 2022 11:49 pm

How many oil companies have made statements agreeing with the plaintiffs? Are those the only ones getting sued?
There could be a fire sale on the company assets to pay the claims and get out of the oil business.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Mike Jonas
January 27, 2022 9:44 am

1) Oil is traded internationally, its price established by world markets. Lawsuit losses of a few players under the legal jurisdiction of the U.S. will not affect consumers in any meaningful way. Note that the Dutch government’s lawless stupidity with Shell didn’t affect consumers.

2) The oil assets of a few bankrupt players will continue to be produced by new owners or the original owners under reorganization plans.

Free market capitalism depends on stable governmental laws and regulations. That is what is under attack here by Marxists, Leftists and Socialists.

Like the tobacco settlement monies it will all go to governmental entities, not to the people harmed.

Last edited 3 months ago by Dave Fair
DonM
Reply to  Dave Fair
January 27, 2022 10:31 am

🙂
How could it go to the “people harmed”?

(how could anyone in Baltimore be harmed by ‘climate change’, let alone an increase in atmospheric CO2?)

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  DonM
January 27, 2022 1:33 pm

The alleged harms are all collective. The bayside area will be subject to flooding, say, but individual property owners wouldn’t be able to take the money and protect their own properties. Clearly, only the city is capable of taking the collective action necessary, so just as clearly, only the city should get the money (/snark).

DonM
Reply to  D. J. Hawkins
January 27, 2022 6:11 pm

I did a quick check on Flood Hazard removals in the Baltimore area.

Based on the FEMA defined (current … no AGW SLR included) flood hazard elevation of 5 to 9 feet (NAVD), there are still numerous LOMA’s & LOMR’s being approved and done.

The local jurisdiction has to sign off on the LOMR’s and state that it is “reasonably safe from flooding”.

The local jurisdiction is responsible for floodplain management that keeps the structures “reasonably safe from flooding”.

If Baltimore is not jumping up and down screaming that their waterfront properties are not safe, and Baltimore is still allowing LOMR’s (and other development) to occur, then they must not think that SLR is a threat.

Very simple for the defendants to point this out.

Last edited 3 months ago by DonM
Chuck no longer in Houston
Reply to  Dave Fair
January 27, 2022 2:02 pm

DF – “Note that the Dutch government’s lawless stupidity with Shell didn’t affect consumers.”

Also note that Shell is moving the business to the UK. They will continue to operate in the Netherlands but from a corporate standpoint, they will be based in the UK.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Chuck no longer in Houston
January 27, 2022 3:37 pm

A good move by Shell. Even better, Shell could shut off sales in the Netherlands as part of its meeting the court’s ruling that Shell has to reduce down-stream customers’ CO2 emissions. Poetic (or cosmic) justice.

Bryan A
January 26, 2022 6:41 pm

It would be interesting to go through the town and remove all things Oil, Gas, Coal or Petrochemical dependent. Start with Plastics and Car Tires and include Solar Panels and Wind Mills (both are dependent on Coking Coal for elemental purity).

Yooper
January 26, 2022 6:47 pm

The oil companies should just say, “OK we’ll stop any climate change in Baltimore and Maryland by not selling our stuff there”.

Fraizer
Reply to  Yooper
January 26, 2022 7:11 pm

And the state would file a RICO suite in a New York (Baltimore?) minute.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Fraizer
January 27, 2022 1:34 pm

Piffle. It’s all due to “supply chain issues”.

Fraizer
January 26, 2022 7:08 pm

The point is not to stop big oil. On the contrary, just like tobacco, the government makes more on taxes than the companies do in profits.

The point is to extract money from the companies in “reparations” for the “damage” they cause while continuing to let them operate. Don’t want to kill the golden goose after all.

$3-$5 per gallon should be sufficient – which of course will be passed on to the consumer.

MarkW
Reply to  Fraizer
January 26, 2022 8:12 pm

Very few people cared when taxes triple the price of cigarettes overnight, because only a tiny fraction of the people smoked by the time the taxes were impossed.

On the other hand, if taxes were to triple the price of gasoline/diesel/natural gas/electricity overnight, the reaction is going to be a lot bigger.

TonyG
Reply to  Fraizer
January 27, 2022 11:01 am

$3-$5 per gallon should be sufficient

Just like a top rate of 7% was sufficient for the income tax.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  TonyG
January 27, 2022 1:40 pm

In the modern era, after ratification of the 16th amendment, the first federal tax rate was 1% on up to $20,000 in 1913. The top rate of 7% applied to incomes over $500,000.

TonyG
Reply to  D. J. Hawkins
January 27, 2022 2:43 pm

Pretty sure I specified 7% was the top rate.

But my point was that 1%-7% was “sufficient” in the same way that $3-$5/gallon is “sufficient”.

Jeff Alberts
January 26, 2022 7:42 pm

Wouldn’t the plaintiffs have to show some sort of dangerous climate change for this to have any merit?

Dave Fair
Reply to  Eric Worrall
January 27, 2022 10:03 am

Interesting thought, Eric. Did each and every defendant ever say that the climate is not changing? Were each and every one of their prior comments simply that there is uncertainty about the magnitude of any warming or express the opinion that any warming could be minor? Could an individual company be exempt from the joint lawsuit if it showed it never made any of the statements attributed to the group?

Additionally, it would be fun if the defendants could put CliSciFi on the docket, especially the UN IPCC CliSciFi models.

Anyway, the case will wind up back at SCOTUS. Here, they just punted back to the appellate court for the time being, knowing full well they will have to eventually rule on CliSciFi. They will delay as long as possible because this is a hugely controversial issue and they lose with an appreciable percentage of the populace any way they rule and they will come under vicious attack by various political factions.

Last edited 3 months ago by Dave Fair
PCman999
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
January 26, 2022 8:22 pm

I’m sure the idiot Democrat judges will accept computer models’ output as solid facts. And everyone on the planet for the past 100-plus years has been demonizing oil companies, whether “Big Oil” or the multitude of smaller companies, for the sin of providing people a product that they need to make their lives livable.

I echo the sentiments of the commentor who suggested that the oil companies abandon the state. I’m sure if someone is suing you, then you don’t have to keep providing the service in question.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
January 26, 2022 9:00 pm

They don’t need to because SCOTUS had previously betrayed us and turned us over to the EPA for punishment. If they did need evidence, they could always use the tide gauge data from Annapolis (capital of the Peoples Republic of Maryland) – it’s ‘sinking’ like a rock.

John
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
January 26, 2022 9:05 pm

why spoil the lie with the truth

Tom.1
Reply to  Jeff Alberts
January 27, 2022 3:18 am

Send in the models…

Dave Fair
Reply to  Tom.1
January 27, 2022 10:04 am

The SI models.

markl
January 26, 2022 7:53 pm

Lawfare and nothing more. Even losing the case is winning. Until we hold the antagonizing party liable for costs this will continue. Some countries already understand this.

Sunsettommy(@sunsetmpoutlookcom)
Editor
January 26, 2022 8:44 pm

What climate change?

In my region the climate is the same as it was 100 years ago, which indicate that selling fuels and using them in the region didn’t materially cause any change to the climate.

But if Baltimore wants to win the case, they then MUST stop the consumption of fuels in their city limits otherwise they have no credibility.

Derg
Reply to  Sunsettommy
January 27, 2022 1:44 am

I could use global warming. Why is January nearly identical every year 😔

DrEd
Reply to  Sunsettommy
January 27, 2022 8:52 am

Citizens of MD should sue the state of MD for using fossil fuels since they clearly believe fossil fuels are dangerous. What’s good for the goose,,…

J.R.
January 26, 2022 10:29 pm

“… that seeks to hold major fossil fuel companies accountable…”

Which companies are being sued? How many? Two, ten, one hundred? If the alarmists gain an inch in suing oil companies into nonexistence, they will run with it non-stop. On the other hand, if a few companies are severely damaged or destroyed, I imagine the ones left will take over their territory or new companies will spring up.

From this point forward I hope fossil fuel companies will go full bore against the alarmists, challenge all of their assertions and demand evidence of their claims. If oil companies come out swinging and genuinely fight for themselves, the alarmists won’t have a leg to stand on.

Vincent Causey
January 26, 2022 11:58 pm

I don’t understand what the oil companies are supposed to do? Stop selling oil? It would just mean their oil assets will be bought by Saudi or China, so it would achieve less than nothing.

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  Vincent Causey
January 27, 2022 5:05 am

These welfare-centric cities are just going after what they view as deep pockets. In this way, very analogous to the tobacco lawsuits. The key differences are that:

  1. The global economy isn’t dependent on reliable access to affordable tobacco.
  2. The tobacco companies probably did actually engage in deceptive practices.
MarkW
Reply to  David Middleton
January 27, 2022 8:32 am

It was also easy to point to actual harm, to actual people, that was being done by tobacco.

Dave Fair
Reply to  MarkW
January 27, 2022 10:14 am

But they didn’t get anything out of the settlement; governmental entities got the bulk of it.

Joseph Zorzin
January 27, 2022 2:45 am

The bottom line is that regardless of what the oil companies said- or that they may have said different things to different people, the public, the media, themselves internally, whatever- the fact is that they didn’t know the truth about the supposed climate change as nobody else does to this day. This is not the same as tobacco companies having known that heavy smoking can cause cancer- EVERYBODY knew that back several decades ago.

Kevin Stall
January 27, 2022 2:47 am

Yes, turn these suits into forcing the states to prove climate change is threat, that its real. The stupid 97% of scientists was created by bloggers based on questionable methods .and there is counter evidence for each charge

Rick C
January 27, 2022 3:44 am

I think the oil companies have played along knowing that the climate issue would kill coal and leave them standing with a bigger total market. They are, after all natural gas companies too and gas is now the dominant electrical generation fuel. They must certainly also know there is no realistic alternative renewable replacement. Perhaps they’ve been too clever by half. Or maybe their smarter than everyone thinks.

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
January 27, 2022 4:48 am

Arguing against the basic science is a losing proposition. There are no reputable scientists who dispute the fact that fossil fuel emissions increase the atmospheric content of CO2 and that this has some warming effect on the troposphere. No one disputed this back in the 1960’s, 1970’s and 1980’s when all of these alleged “smoking gun” memos were written. The questions revolved around the magnitude of the warming, the degree to which it will be good or bad and whether or not there are any “solutions” that aren’t worse than the generally unquantified problem.

The alleged “secret science” basically consists of memos, cartoons and diagrams that were based on what had been learned from AMS, AGU and US government publications and conferences. The oil companies were generally trying to figure out if and how the US government might try to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

The conclusions generally were:

  1. We can’t accurately estimate the magnitude of the potential warming.
  2. We don’t know if warming will be a net-benefit or net-hazard.
  3. There don’t appear to be any solutions that aren’t worse than the potential problem.
  4. There probably isn’t any way the government could tightly regulate greenhouse emissions without destroying the global economy, which is dependent on fossil fuels.

The funny thing about this is that these are all “boiler plate” lawsuits. Variations of this image from a 1978 Exxon (or Mobil) presentation appear in most, if not all, nuisance climate lawsuits in US courts:

comment image

Here’s the same graph with HadCRUT4 NH overlaid on it:

comment image

Way back in 1978, Exxon knew what we all know today… The climate models aren’t worth schist.

Last edited 3 months ago by David Middleton
bonbon
Reply to  David Middleton
January 27, 2022 6:14 am

Something has changed drastically : Three of the largest asset managers, BlackRock, State Street and Vanguard, own nearly 20 percent of Exxon Mobil.
These financial behemoths are all in for NetZero. Have they board members?
And if so, are they involved in the lawsuits?

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  bonbon
January 27, 2022 7:26 am

Only one board member is directly tied to BlackRock, State Street and/or Vanguard…

Joseph L. Hooley

Age 64, Director since 2020

Principal occupation: Former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of State Street Corporation

Business experience: Mr. Hooley served as Chairman of State Street Corporation from 2011 to 2019. He served as Chief Executive Officer from 2010 to 2018 and President from 2008 to 2014. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer.

Current public company directorships: Aptiv PLC (January 2020–Present)

Past public company directorships: State Street Corporation (October 2010–December 2019)

Although many of the board members clearly appear to be Net Zeroes… https://corporate.exxonmobil.com/About-us/Who-we-are/Corporate-governance/ExxonMobil-board-of-directors#ExxonMobilCorporationBoardofDirectors

bonbon
Reply to  David Middleton
January 27, 2022 11:54 am

I wonder if someone has cross-gridded such NetZero’s with the Auto and Oil sector Boards? That’s a lot of work for sure…
Something stinks here to high heaven and it is not Crude….

Jim Gorman
Reply to  David Middleton
January 27, 2022 6:40 am

What I see the judges will be tasked to decide is what the temperature increase should be to prevent catastrophic effects. We are dealing with predictions of the future being FACT. Judges can not award damages based upon a prediction of 1 – 6 degrees of warning, they can only rule on proven facts. They must rule on fact. Just where is the correct temp within that range and what is the cost/benefit? The current temperature won’t do. The oil companies will only need to do their share of meeting that temperature.

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  Jim Gorman
January 27, 2022 7:13 am

The judges can only legally decide whether or not the oil companies engaged in deceptive practices.

David Dibbell
January 27, 2022 5:02 am

Forget the oil companies, Baltimore! Sue the microbes and the plants. Together those polluters are emitting over 10 times the CO2 resulting from using oil company products.(\sarc) comment image

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  David Dibbell
January 27, 2022 5:08 am

Microbes and plants aren’t lucrative sources of $$$ for welfare-centric Democrat-run schist holes.

tim maguire
January 27, 2022 5:04 am

On one level, this is an Iran-Iraq War situation where the best outcome is they both lose, but if the oil companies are hung by their own stupid PR campaigns, that may serve as a lesson to others going forward. Which would be a bigger win.

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  tim maguire
January 27, 2022 5:11 am

Gotta watch out for those PR campaigns

comment image

“EACH DAY HUMBLE SUPPLIES ENOUGH ENERGY TO MELT 7 MILLION TONS OF GLACIER!” Exxon knew in 1962!!!

Humble Oil was founded in Humble, Texas in 1911. In 1919, Standard Oil of New Jersey acquired a 50% stake in Humble Oil. They acquired the other 50% in 1959. Eventually all of the affiliates were merged into Exxon Corporation in 1973 and ultimately merged with Mobil Oil Corporation, a descendant of Standard Oil Company of New York, in 1999 to become ExxonMobil (Texas State Historical Association)

bonbon
January 27, 2022 5:31 am

The same thing happened to the Auto industry – they and Big Oil should fire every corp. lawyer that pursued the disastrous strategy. If it was the marketing depts. putting pressure on the Legal crowd, they should first eat the losses, and then be fired.
If it was shareholder values, well just look at BlackRock, on every Board, fully signed onto NetZero. This is far too big to fire. Which makes one wonder if this is their strategy?

4 Eyes
January 27, 2022 5:37 am

After 40 years as a petroleum engineer and 30 years following the CAGW CO2 (non) debate and now retired I happily agree with everything said above. In several companies I tried to convince managers above me of the folly of appeasement but to no avail. You have crystallized the situation very well. What gets me is that their lawyers could not see the implications of agreeing that CO2 was causing CAGW.Maybe they could but were smart enough to see that even more lucrative work was on the horizon. Perhaps investors could bring a class action suit against some of the oil company executives on the basis of gross incompetence. If the oil companies had just stuck with the line that they produce hydrocarbons but they aren’t the ones that burn them then the case against them would be hard to prosecute.

Donald B Thompson
January 27, 2022 6:30 am

One issue I have regards whether “Big Oil” marketing campaigns were built around denying CAGW. Since they have accepted the premise, unlike big tobacco, they don’t appear to have been deceptive in their marketing. That issue, not the CAGW premise, seems to be at issue in the lawsuit. Are their large numbers of ads that deny the warmist hypothesis?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Donald B Thompson
January 27, 2022 4:30 pm

“Are their large numbers of ads that deny the warmist hypothesis?”

None I can think of.

Jeff L
January 27, 2022 6:55 am

Oil companies have always been good at finding, transporting, refining & selling oil and associated products. Public relations …. not so much. Those of us in the biz old enough to remember the Exxon Valdez can attest to that … as well as a hundred other smaller , less well known situations. There has always been a blind spot that there are people literally out to destroy them , their companies & their industry.

As a subset of the PR debacle, the AAPG, a trade/technical group for the upstream portion of the business regularly now has content supporting positions of those wanting to dismantle the very industry they represent. And they do so unappologetically – they have rolled over and don’t really care about their membership or the value their membership brings to society. It’s a pretty sad state of affairs. As others have commented, they kind of deserve to loose for not fighting, but at the end of the day, society and the average person are going to be the big losers.

David Middleton(@debunkhouse)
Editor
Reply to  Jeff L
January 27, 2022 7:18 am

Lately, each month, there’s at least one article in the Explorer that makes me wonder if my AAPG membership is worthwhile. I nearly left the SEG earlier this year. I only stayed in because I’ve been an SEG member for 40 years.

Jeff L
Reply to  David Middleton
January 27, 2022 8:10 am

I have the exact same thoughts. I figured you would too.

ResourceGuy
January 27, 2022 6:56 am

It’s not like there aren’t other pressing problems going on in Baltimore. That city and a lot of others in the U.S. like Atlanta, New Orleans, Memphis, SF, LA, and DC need to be officially tagged with travel warnings in case foreign and domestic travelers need warnings of personal safety. They are at greater risk in those cities than in most war torn areas of the world.

eyesonu
Reply to  ResourceGuy
January 27, 2022 8:10 am

+42

Honestly agree with you. Warnings required in all advertising for travel, conferences, real estate sales, etc. that crime is high and anyone visiting will be at an elevated risk. The stats show it to be unequivical and a real and present danger.

ResourceGuy
Reply to  eyesonu
January 27, 2022 9:53 am

These problems are compounded by lack of official work to counter the crime beside occasional and official hand wringing. The ANC in SA must have copied U.S. Dem urban policy in un-leadership styles mixed with extreme corruption and other personal agendas.

R Hall
January 27, 2022 7:10 am

Are there any actual damages to Baltimore from a changing climate?
Is Baltimore suing Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, or Russia?

Charlie
Reply to  R Hall
January 27, 2022 7:47 am

All the defendants, 26 in all, in this shakedown attempt are Western oil companies. It appears only two, BP and Shell, are non-US companies. Defendant Citgo is part-owned by Venezuela.

Tom Gelsthorpe
January 27, 2022 7:50 am

Baltimore wouldn’t be a seaport, or a major city, if not for climate change. 20,000 years ago the Baltimore area was near tundra about 100 miles from the massive glacier’s edge in Pennsylvania Sea level was 400’ lower. The Patapsco River was a minor tributary of the Susquehanna, a shallow stream that emptied into the Atlantic 100 miles east of where Virginia Beach is now.

All these climate “debates” share the error of measuring changes over too short a term, blaming them on human sin, and overlooking the occurrence of fluctuations that have nothing to do with human activity, and predate the arrival of Homo sapiens on earth.

Lawsuits that fail to address these realities, but endanger our economy are like bald men trying to tear out each other’s dwindling hairs.

Tom Gelsthorpe
Reply to  Tom Gelsthorpe
January 27, 2022 7:52 am

I omitted a period after “Pennsylvania.”

eyesonu
Reply to  Tom Gelsthorpe
January 27, 2022 9:05 am

Most of us here are very forgiving of minor errors and omissions in spelling and punctuation. 🙂

Diogenese
January 27, 2022 9:52 am

Just stop selling oil in that state , just call a press conference and state as of Friday we will no longer serve this state , watch the chaos as drivers cue to fill up then start throwing rocks at politicians ,.
Case over .

Tom Abbott
January 27, 2022 12:03 pm

From the article: “A federal appeals court in Virginia heard a landmark case Tuesday that seeks to hold major fossil fuel companies accountable for their role in climate change.”

What climate change? The first sentence starts out with an unsupported assumption, namely, that oil companies and CO2 are doing something that changes the Earth’s climate.

Judge! There’s no evidence this is the case. Hold the accuser’s feet to the fire. Make them prove what they claim. You know the difference between assumptions and assertions and actual evidence. That’s the job of a judge, to determine which is which.

There’s no evidence, judge. There are lots of assumptions and assertions, but no evidence. This ought to be an easy one to decide for a fair-minded, impartial judge.

Tom Abbott
January 27, 2022 12:10 pm

From the article: “I’m not a legal expert, but the issue appears to be that oil companies have admitted their product causes dangerous climate change. Instead of continuing to vigorously challenge alarmist narratives, they mostly went soft and tried to be everyone’s friend.”

That’s exactly what they did.

That doesn’t change the fact that there is no evidence whatsoever that CO2 is causing the Earth’s climate to change.

January 27, 2022 12:54 pm

The man are doubling down on the attacks on the fossil fuel industry that are causing energy prices to spike. Clearly they want them a lot higher yet.

Gunga Din
January 27, 2022 5:26 pm

If there’s to be a lawsuit against “Big Oil”, should the accused be defined?
Just who is “Big Oil”?
I’m sure that they will claim damages from weather events etc.
But just how did the unspecified “Big Oil” cause this?
Did anything like it ever happen before “Big Oil” even existed?
Reading a tree ring told them?
(Discovery might be interesting. Maybe we’ll finally get to see Mann’s emails!)

Geoffrey Williams
January 28, 2022 5:42 pm

Oil companies ‘PR blunders’ serves them right . .

richard
January 29, 2022 3:57 am

oil price up over 200% .

%d bloggers like this: