Boston, MA - Massachusetts’ Attorney General is attempting to force Exxon to hand over all documentation and records having anything to do with climate change and what the company told the public in recent years.
On January 7, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court declined ExxonMobil’s recent attempt to block Massachusetts’ current investigation on the company. According to reports, Exxon is being accused of allegedly giving information out to the public and certain investors regarding climate change, information that should or should not have been withheld from these groups. Because the U.S. Supreme Court declined this attempt, State Attorney General Maura Healey will be able to move forward with her demand for Exxon to hand over all records pertaining to the matter. The investigation will hopefully clear up whether Exxon concealed information regarding fossil fuels and global warming. Once the records have been handed over, officials will be able to investigate the company’s internal conversations, therefore giving officials a look into past business plans both financially and economically.
ExxonMobil has been trying to win this fight with Healey for approximately two years now, but the U.S. Supreme Court has yet to take Exxon’s side. Healey believes that the public has a right to know what, if any, harm can be done by burning fossil fuels.
When asked about the impact, Exxon refused to comment.
So far, investigators have found that the company did research a few decades back reviewing concerns that they had on the impact of CO2 emissions being let out into the open air. Most of the findings were not released to the public. According to officials, the investigation is planned to find how much climate change knowledge Exxon has had over the years, when they discovered the information, and how they handled the information once put together.
As of now, the only argument ExxonMobil has in Massachusetts is that they have only franchised service stations within the state; they do not operate their business anywhere in the state. Still, that was not enough to dismiss investigations.