Oil Is The New Tobacco As Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) Finds Itself In The Crosshairs

Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) recently went to court to try and block an attempt to force it to turn over certain internal documents relating to climate change research findings. The move followed a closed door meeting of several state attorneys general and environmental activists where it is believed Exxon was a major subject of discussion.

There have been widespread claims in the recent times that Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) sat on researching findings that would have helped mitigate the impact of global warming had they been made public. The U.S. Virgin Islands has asked the company to turn over documents of its research findings into the impact of fossil fuel on the environment dating back to 1980s. The AGs pursuing the company believe that the documents from decades ago would contradict the company’s claims about its position on climate change issues.

Unfair targeting

Exxon for its part insists that it has always stood for measures to curb global warming and that it has nothing to hide. The company further claims unfair targeting by the AGs and environmentalists. But the state AGs and activists are accusing the company of trying to cover up its knowledge of climate change.

Oil is the new tobacco

Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) and other oil companies are finding themselves in the same position as tobacco companies in 1990s. Tobacco companies were accused of putting profits before the health of their consumers. They were held to explain why they withheld information that would have exposed the health risk of smoking.

Now, Exxon is fighting claims that it had long known the adverse impact of oil on the environment but decided to keep its understanding of the matter secret.

On the issue of subpoena from the U.S. Virgin Islands AG office, Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) claims that the subpoena violates its constitutional rights. The company has vowed to fight the demand for its climate change research papers.

However, things could get complicated for Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) and its oil peers as for government agencies and activist groups turn their attention to oil industry and its contribution to global warming.

Neha Gupta

Neha Gupta has been in the financial space for over six years now. Gupta earned her MBA degree from Symbiosis Centre of Distance Learning in 2009 and her passion for finance led her to pursue Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) course. She has successfully completed Level II of her CFA. She is a veteran in article writing, which is depicted in her numerous pieces published on SeekingAlpha, Nextiphonenews, InsiderMonkey, MarketWatch, and Techinsider. Her crisp and eloquent writing finds its best place in Researchcows, where emphasis is given on developing rich content for various websites, products, business plans, trainings, and book writing.

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