A new website is wading into the global warming blame game, attempting to link severe weather to climate change. But an EID review shows that the researchers are not scientists, but rather PR professionals funded by the wealthy Rockefellers.
The website, called Climate Signals, released a report this week that “presents the results of a comprehensive literature review and meta-analysis of studies that positively identify the fingerprint of human-caused climate change on observed trends and events.” But the “comprehensive” review actually excludes studies that don’t blame severe weather on climate change. As the authors admit: “The report does not include detection and attribution studies unable to find evidence of climate change.”
The Climate Signals website would have you believe it is a trustworthy source of scientific information, describing itself as a “digital science platform.” But its work product is anything but scientific.
Climate Signals is a project of Climate Nexus, a PR project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. The Rockefellers have funded every aspect of the #ExxonKnew campaign, including other shoddy academic papers. Emails show that Climate Nexus is the PR shop of choice for #ExxonKnew activists.
Without a complete catalogue of research, this paper is more of a book report than a formal literature review. But that’s not how they advertised their research; one tweet made it seem that they had definitively established a causal link between climate change and extreme weather events.
Climate change is already happening and harming Americans. Our new report finds #climatechange has directly affected many extreme events and has in some cases *caused* them. https://t.co/vsXyG9Sbhr pic.twitter.com/9QXU2iGxqS
— Climate Signals (@ClimateSignals) September 26, 2018
This break from traditional scientific research methods and the use of breathless promotional materials should be expected, because the report was not written by scientists; it was written by two communications professionals.
The paper was authored by Hunter Cutting, the founder of Climate Signals and director of strategic communications for Climate Nexus; and Rose Andreatta, a climate communications senior manager at Climate Nexus. Cutting has a public history of strong bias against the fossil fuel industry and allegiance to the #ExxonKnew campaign. Ahead of a New York Times Magazine issue observing that by the late 1970s and early 1980s, “everybody knew” climate change was happening, Cutting attempted some damage control, writing a pre-buttal critical of the article’s reluctance to blame a lack of action on climate change on the fossil fuel industry.
Climate Signals’ recent study was quickly promoted by various other Rockefeller-funded campaigns. Twitter accounts, including 350.org’s @Exxon_Knew and The Center for Public Integrity’s PayUpClimatePolluters, coordinated quickly to retweet the paper and disseminate it to the anti-fossil fuel activist network. Both organizations are also heavily involved in promoting climate litigation against the fossil fuel industry.
Climate Signals, and in turn the Rockefellers, aims to establish in the public’s mind a definitive, causal relationship between climate change and extreme weather. If their previous actions are any indication, they plan to use this research to spur additional lawsuits that could force energy companies to pay billions of dollars.
As crazy as that sounds, it is already happening.