In July 1979, Exxon scientists were worried. They delivered a sobering message to the company’s top executives: carbon dioxide from the world’s use of fossil fuels would warm the planet and could eventually endanger humanity.
For the next ten years, Exxon scientists led some of the best research on manmade climate change, leading to the conclusion that estimated a doubling of the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere would increase average global temperatures by 2 to 3 degrees Celsius (4 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit), and as much as 10 degrees Celsius (18 degrees Fahrenheit) at the poles. Rainfall might get heavier in some regions, and other places might turn to desert.
“Some countries would benefit but others would have their agricultural output reduced or destroyed,” concluded one Exxon scientist, in the written summary of a 1978 company presentation.
Some countries would have their agriculture destroyed. That’s what Exxon thought. Destroyed. No food for some countries.
Inside Climate News has chronicled Exxon’s evolution from scientific leadership in the 1970-1980’s, to funding the constellation of climate denial front groups in the 1990-2000’s. It’s a must read for people wondering how America became the last global holdout of skepticism about climate science.
Here’s a quick summary:
Read the entire article here.