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For Immediate Release

Seth Gladstone, 347.778.2866

European Parliament to Address #ExxonKnew Scandal, Consider Action Against the Fossil Fuel Giant

Parliament committee will consider a petition submitted by Food & Water Europe demanding accountability for decades-long climate change cover-up.

Brussels, Belgium

The Petitions Committee of the European Parliament announced that it will consider tomorrow a petition submitted by the advocacy group Food & Water Europe calling on the Parliament to take action to hold ExxonMobil accountable for its decades-long cover-up of internal documents tying its fossil fuel production to globe-threatening climate change. The scandal, known colloquially as #ExxonKnew, arose in 2015 when evidence came to lightshowing that Exxon scientists confirmed at least as early as 1981 that fossil fuel extraction and burning contributed significantly to dangerous climate change, but hid those conclusions and funded massive efforts to publicly challenge its own internal science.

The committee session will take place tomorrow, Wednesday, at 10:30 ET; it can be viewed online.

Wednesday's session in Parliament follows the opening of criminal investigations into Exxon's actions by attorneys general in Massachusetts and New York. But Parliament's interest in challenging Exxon comes in stark contrast to the Trump administration'segregious climate denial and aggressive promotion of the fossil fuel industry. President Trump appointed Rex Tillerson, the CEO of ExxonMobil during much of their science cover-up period, as his first secretary of state.

"ExxonMobil has misled the public debate on climate change for over 40 years but due to close ties between ExxonMobil and the Trump administration, an initial push to hold the corporation accountable is stalled," said Member of European Parliament Marina Albiol Guzman, a member of the Petitions Committee. "Tackling ExxonMobil's climate cover up now in the European Parliament could be an opportunity for parliamentarians to walk the talk and prove their willingness to tackle climate change and honor the Paris Agreement."

"European Parliament's interest in holding ExxonMobil accountable for its decades of lies and cover-ups is certainly encouraging," said Wenonah Hauter, executive director of Food & Water Watch and Food & Water Europe. "The ball is now rolling on a process that may finally force Exxon to reckon with its toxic, deceitful past and answer for its assault on our planet. We urge Parliament to act swiftly and aggressively in this critical matter, and take powerful action against Exxon."

Food & Water Watch mobilizes regular people to build political power to move bold and uncompromised solutions to the most pressing food, water, and climate problems of our time. We work to protect people's health, communities, and democracy from the growing destructive power of the most powerful economic interests.

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