Exxon, a horseman of impending climate doom, has some thoughts on climate goals.
According to Exxon Mobil, oil giant and one of the more prominent architects of our planet's fossil fuel-laden doom, humanity is likely to fail its climate goals of halting a global temperature rise of two degrees Celsius by 2050.
As The Wall Street Journal reports, Exxon published its grim prediction in a Monday climate report, effectively arguing that while global climate change efforts have made some progress — CO2 emissions caused by world fossil fuel consumption, the company posits, will fall by 25 billion metric tons by 2050, which will mark a 26 percent decrease from this decade's "peak of 34 billion," according to the WSJ — it simply won't be enough to curb that dreaded two-degree global temperature uptick.
"An energy transition is underway," reads the Exxon report, according to Reuters, "but it is not yet happening at the scale or on the timetable required to achieve society's net-zero ambitions."
Very bleak! And yet, according to the WSJ, Exxon also, in the very same report, argued that fossil fuels are conveniently still necessary to power worldwide economic growth.
"Fossil fuels remain the most effective way," said the oil producer, "to produce the massive amounts of energy needed to create and support the manufacturing, commercial transportation, and industrial sectors that drive modern economies."
Great. Thanks for nothing.
We really can't stress enough how ludicrous it is to receive such dismal climate projections from Exxon specifically. To back up for a second: in 2015, an investigation revealed that executives at Exxon were made aware of the threat of greenhouse gas-caused climate change back in 1977, long before the public knew anything about it. They chose to ignore the risk, even spending millions to launch a long series of climate misinformation campaigns. Today, as the WSJ notes, the company is currently embroiled in a number of lawsuits related to climate deception.
That's all to say that this latest report feels much like the cigarette lobby publishing a memo declaring that people are still dying from lung cancer, before turning around and explaining why cigarettes are still super useful and necessary long-term for social progress, actually. (Indeed, there are a lot of similarities between the cigarette lobby and oil giants.) And in June of this year, it's worth noting, Exxon and Chevron shareholders rejected a series of proposals aimed to further limit emissions.
To Exxon's credit, it's probably right. The Earth is in a very bad place — and as long as Exxon's still making upwards of $56 billion in oil sales annually, hitting our 2050 emissions targets is unlikely.
More on climate change: UN Warns That We’ve Gone Beyond Global Warming and into "Global Boiling"
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