Why Oil Companies Are Rogue Actors

For some of this, the article is simply confirmation. For some of us, it’s a shocking reminder that we never realize just how bad it is until it’s bad in our immediate vicinity. Another keeper from The Dish.

The Dish

by Bill McKibben

A Greenpeace activist holds a banner dur

A reader writes to complain that fossil fuel divestment is a pointless waste of time:

What divestment does do is make people feel good. That they’re “doing something”, without having to do the thing that they actually need to do: use much less fossil fuel. It’s like a room full of chain smokers advocating tobacco divestment.

This is a reasonable complaint, or at least it would be if having individual people decide to use less fossil fuel could actually cure global warming in the time that physics allows us. But it can’t, because the problem is structural: given that the fossil fuel industry is allowed to pour carbon into the atmosphere for free, they have a huge incentive to keep us on the current path. And since they’re the richest industry on earth, they have the means as well as the motive. (Chevron, for instance, offered the largest…

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