Support Greenpeace, please

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The following comes from Greenpeace:

We have exposed a secret oil industry plan to organise fake rallies against US climate legislation, and to exaggerate concern over the cost of action on climate change. The plan, stated in a leaked internal memo from the API (American Petroleum Institute) shows that they are reverting back to old tricks - spreading misinformation about climate change and pressing politicians towards inaction.

While Shell Oil have said they won’t participate in this plan - they still give money to the API which continues to lobby the US Government using deceptive tactics.

Climate protection policy is needed urgently. Politicians should listen to climate scientists and the people - not big corporations with vested interests. The API is threatening our future, and our children’s future with their lies.

We need you to tell the oil industry to come clean and support real climate action.

The following letter will be sent to the CEOs of: BHP Billiton, BP, Chevron, Conoco, Exxon, General Electric, Halliburton, Shell and Petrobras.

Dear CEO,

Greenpeace recently obtained an email memo, addressed to you as a member of the American Petroleum Institute (API), calling for help organising a series of "Astroturf" (fake grass-roots protests) rallies to oppose urgently needed climate legislation in the United States. The memo outlined a campaign to use oil industry employees posing as "Energy Citizens" to rally against climate change action. This campaign would promote misleading and outdated information, to scare the US politicians into acting against OUR best interests, in defense of your profits.

Twenty one years ago, the API used a very similar tactic when it set up the Global Climate Coalition to undermine the science around global climate change, and to create doubt through generating "news" stories. Eleven years ago, they were exposed, and discredited, resulting in many of the members withdrawing support for this project. The debate has now moved on in terms of the weight of scientific evidence available, and the shift in public opinion. But, some corporations remain entrenched in their old ways.

Some API members now claim that they acknowledge the scientific evidence of climate change and its dire implications. The recent API ‘Energy Citizen’ campaign was not supposed to publicly 'oppose' legislation, but the memo to API membership shows that killing the Waxman Markey Clean Energy Bill or slowing political momentum on climate action is clearly their intent.

As a member of the API, your membership fees are funding this deceptive project. Already this year US corporations have spent US$ 82 million lobbying the US Congress. Catastrophic climate change threatens to; wipe out a quarter of the world’s species, displace over a billion people and make poverty permanent - all within the lifetime of our children. If we are to avoid these terrible consequences the world needs a transparent, democratic and honest debate on climate change policy, and it needs urgent action. You can help achieve both these things by:

* Demonstrate your disapproval of the continued use of similar tactics by API by publicly withdrawing membership altogether,

* Make a public statement calling on the head of state in every country where you do business to support cuts of greenhouse gas emissions of 40% by industrialised countries as a group by 2020.

* Making clear your company's position on cap and trade and or taxation as a means to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions

I am sending this letter to the CEOs of: BHP Billiton, BP, Chevron, Conoco, Exxon, General Electric, Halliburton, Shell and Petrobras.

Yours sincerely,

It is staggering that companies like BP and Shell are members of an organisation that is still denying climate change and that is opposing President Obama’s plans.

Please sign up on the Greenpeace site to add your name to the protest.