In Essays, Innovation

There’s been much reported on the aggressive efforts Big Oil made at the recent COP27 to obfuscate the issue of climate change and delay any action on it. Today’s “Big Read” in the Financial Times builds on this PR strategy, and the story borders on journalistic malfeasance.

Headlined “Saudi Arabia’s Green Deal,” the article shares blather from the kingdom’s elite about their commitment to meeting a net zero pledge by 2060.

Forget for a moment that such pledges aren’t binding, or that the environment will have had another 35 years to get worse thanks to an incrementalist approach to addressing a huge, raging, immediate problem.

The FT article focuses on the real issue facing Saudi Arabia: Can it meet its ambitious green goals?

Are you kidding me?

In deference to some hint of a past awareness of journalistic integrity, the article notes that the Saudis use of green energy will free up more oil to sell to the world.

This is like writing about a heroin dealer’s efforts to eat healthier so he can sell more drugs to schoolchildren.

Combined with recent remarks from Saudi leaders on how important oil is to the world, it’s pretty obvious that these stories are part of a coordinated campaign to allow it to get richer while the rest of the world incinerates itself.

Its PR execs must be toasting to their success (no pun intended).

I get that demand for oil is a core issue. We rely on it for our very way of life. I’m guilty and so are you. We’re addicted because releasing all that stored carbon provides an immensely powerful and efficient fuel. We’ve never know any other.

But annual confabs of important people and vague, far-off performance goals aren’t helping us see the true error of our ways, or the immediacy of the crisis.

And the ongoing PR campaign from the Saudis and Big Oil in general only make things worse. They don’t want us to face our deepest fears or embrace our responsibility.

Shame on the corporate communicators and journalists who aid and abet their crime.

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