Pinch me.

Oil giant comes in from the cold

Exxon funded global warming denial for years. Yesterday, in an astonishing U-turn, it called for the imposition of green taxes.

By Stephen Foley in New York
Saturday, 10 January 2009

The boss of ExxonMobil, the world’s largest oil company, has called for a carbon tax to tackle global warming, marking a volte-face by the firm once described by Greenpeace as Climate Criminal No 1. Assailed from all sides by scientists and a new cadre of US politicians, led by the President-elect, Barack Obama, the landmark concession by Rex Tillerson represents a nod to realpolitik after years when the company denied the existence of man-made global warming.

Are we getting punked again?

Exxon had already dropped its funding of lobby groups which deny the science of climate change and begun to take a softer public line, but even Mr Tillerson admitted that propounding a carbon tax had stuck in the craw until recently. However, with European-style "cap and trade" rules governing carbon emissions moving up the agenda in the US, a carbon tax may be the least worst option, he said. Environmental groups gave a sceptical response to Exxon’s U-turn, calling it a deliberate attempt to torpedo the movement for outright carbon caps and any early switch to alternative energy.

I dunno.

But just for today, I’m gonna celebrate seeing Exxon forced into asking for carbon taxes.