Exxon Mobil Corp. Chief Executive Darren Woods apologized and contradicted statements made by two of the company's top Washington lobbyists after an environmental group released a video rejecting their public positions on climate change.
In a recording with a Greenpeace representative that led the lobbyists to video interviews with a recruiter, Keith McCoy, Exxon’s
Senior Director of Federal Relations, called the company's support for a carbon tax to fight climate change an "easy topic of conversation" as it is a policy that is unlikely to be implemented.
"Nobody is going to propose a tax to all Americans," McCoy said in a video of the interview Greenpeace posted online on Wednesday. “And the cynical side of me says yes, we kind of know that. But it gives us something to talk about. We can tell what Exxon Mobil is for? Well, we are in favor of a CO2 tax. "
McCoy also said he "played defense" by working to remove certain carbon-reduction provisions from President Joe Biden's proposed massive infrastructure package. Exxon has tried to water down the legislation by advocating with key bipartisan lawmakers like Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, he said.
Additionally, McCoy appeared to be saying that Exxon had previously endorsed groups attempting to discredit climate research, despite not providing details, adding that Exxon had not committed any crimes.
Hours after the group posted the video, Woods issued a statement saying that the views expressed did not reflect Exxon's position on climate change issues and that the men never participated in the development of the company's policy positions on the debated Subjects were involved.
An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.
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