Tell GM to Stop Funding Climate Change Denial

Tell GM to Stop Funding Climate Change Denial

UPDATE: We win!

Scientists worldwide agree that global warming is real and that a big part of the problem is man-made pollution from our cars. That might explain why big automakers like General Motors are funding a “think tank” that actively pushes propaganda in the media and schools that says global warming is an unproven theory. But it doesn’t excuse GM from using OUR taxpayer dollars to do it.

The “think tank” is the Heartland Institute, a leading denier of global warming often cited by conservative politicians. Recently, however, shocking information surfaced about who makes Heartland’s global warming denial possible. A collection of leaked documents reveals that major corporations provide funding for the Heartland Institute, including General Motors.

GM was kept afloat in the last two years by a massive taxpayer bailout. As a result, it’s changed its tune on global warming — saying it wants to “proactively address the concerns posed by climate change”. GM has also made a big show of its electric car, the Chevy Volt. But at the same time GM is funding the Heartland institute to publish misleading information about global warming.

It’s an outrage, and Environmental Action wants to show General Motors that we know about it, so we’re teaming up with the Forecast the Facts campaign to demand that GM’s CEO stop paying think tanks to deny that global warming is real.

As if Heartland’s long history of misinformation wasn’t bad enough, the leaked documents also unveil its intention to insert climate change denial into our nation’s classrooms by developing curricula that positions climate change as “a major scientific controversy.” If that sounds familiar, it’s because opponents of evolution education have used very similar arguments.

All of this is par for the course for a group like Heartland, which made its name helping tobacco company Phillip Morris question links between secondhand smoke and cancer. But General Motors and other mainstream corporations have no business supporting Heartland with our money.

Amazingly, GM initially defended the donation, saying Heartland gives “careful and considerate thought to complex policy issues.” More recently, in response to public pressure, GM has started to back off its support for Heartland, saying it doesn’t agree with Heartland on global warming — even as it continues funding this flim-flam global warming denial.

“Careful and considerate thought” are not words we would use to describe efforts to peddle false science and consciously mislead our nation’s youth about climate change. If you agree, it’s important that you let GM know. We know from past campaigns that public pressure from customers can have a huge impact on corporate behavior.