Ed Markey Confronts Shell Oil Greenwashing

In 2008, as the Shell Oil company joined its fossil fuel colleagues in charging Americans outrageous prices for gasoline, John Hofmeister, then the President of Shell Oil, testified before Congress that his company was making a transition from crude oil to renewable energy solutions such as wind and solar power. He proudly declared that “Shell is an international developer of thin-film solar technology.” Hofmeister also said that Shell Oil was “becoming a significant wind energy producer.”

Notice the particular language that Hofmeister used. He said that Shell Oil was “developing” and “becoming” a company that would provide clean energy solutions – not that Shell Oil actually offered any such solutions.

ed markey shell oilA year later, we see how much Shell Oil’s promises of becoming better were really worth. Shell Oil has announced that it is canceling its solar and wind power projects, and going back to its 20th century energy plan – selling crude oil.

Congressman Ed Markey, chair of the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, isn’t letting this deceptive public relations maneuver go unchallenged. Markey has issued a statement calling Shell Oil to task for its dishonest attempt at greenwashing – covering up its polluting practices with a veneer of environmentalist language.

Markey wrote, “I am disappointed, but cannot say I am surprised. Apparently Shell Oil only wants to place wind turbines and solar panels is in its big-budget commercials, rather than in places where they can help consumers.”

The lesson is clear: Big oil corporations cannot be trusted to develop sustainable energy technology. Real solutions need to come from other, more trustworthy sources, and government funding for oil company “research” needs to end.

Postscript: Guess how many journalists have reported on Ed Markey’s response to Shell Oil’s broken promises. Absolutely zero.

One Comment

on “Ed Markey Confronts Shell Oil Greenwashing
One Comment on “Ed Markey Confronts Shell Oil Greenwashing
  1. the oil compaines have done more for this country then most people could dream about.. the oil companies are good people you dont think the big boys dont put pressure on them also.. give the oil companies the chance to do great things…by the way that computer and screen you are reading this comment with is most likely made with oil based products.. get informed before you talk about broken promisses.. they have what it takes to make dreams come true.. and wind.. its already happening.. just becasue you dont understand it doesnt mean its not happening… keep of the good work shell… i dont blame them for not moving forward with projects they get grief with before they get them off the ground… the nerve they used the two words dishonest and attempt in the same sentences is humors… i dont see the oil companies asking or putting the citizens in debt with tarp money.. focus your engery in worthy direction.. these people have proven records of what they can do..

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