George Monbiot: It is hard to believe it needs stating, but it does. The oil industry is not your friend. Whatever it might say about its ethical credentials, while it continues to invest in fossil fuels, it accelerates climate breakdown and the death of the habitable planet. You would think this point was obvious to everyone. But over the past few weeks, I have spoken to dozens of environmentalists who appear to believe that Shell is on their side. I’ve come to the bizarre conclusion that there is more awareness of the oil industry’s agenda within the arts than there is among conservation groups. To me, Shell’s strategy is so transparent that it is hardly worth debating. It wants to stay in the fossil fuel business, but it needs to fend off the regulation that might threaten this business. If the company is not prepared to abandon its cash engines, it must change people’s perceptions of its activities. Shell’s natural ecosystems fund, in my view, is blatant greenwash. But the company’s strategy is working. A remarkable number of people who should be fighting Shell instead see it as a green alternative to Exxon, persuaded by what is, in comparison with the company’s filthy investments, a tiny sop. Shell has longstanding relationships with four “environmental partners”: the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the Nature Conservancy, Wetlands International, and Earthwatch. I believe it is just as wrong for these groups to take its money as it is for the RSC to take money from BP.
Guardian 26th June 2019 read more »