Subcommittee Examined the Oil Industry’s Efforts to Suppress Climate Science

Oct 23, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. (Oct. 23, 2019)— Today, Rep. Jamie Raskin, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties,  held a hearing entitled, “Examining the Oil Industry’s Efforts to Suppress the Truth about Climate Change.”


  • Former Exxon-affiliated scientists Drs. Martin Hoffert and Ed Garvey testified that Exxon knew the reality of climate change as early as the 1970s, but denied that reality to the public.  Dr. Hoffert testified that Exxon’s actions were “immoral” and “greatly set back efforts to address climate change.”
  • Dr. Naomi Oreskes explained that there was a “systematic discrepancy” between Exxon’s public statements and its science, such that Exxon’s misleading advertisements have distorted democracy and denied the American people “accurate information about a matter that affects our lives, our liberties, and our property.”
  • Dr. Mustafa Ali testified that climate change “is a global and domestic problem and our most vulnerable communities are often hit first and worst.”  He also questioned the seriousness of the oil industry’s supposed commitment to addressing this problem.
  • Ms. Sharon Eubanks asserted that the oil industry’s deception campaign, which mirrored that of the tobacco industry, could constitute “actionable fraud” under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. 


Dr. Mustafa Ali

Vice President, Environmental Justice Climate and Community Revitalization

National Wildlife Federation

Dr. Ed Garvey

Former Exxon Scientist

Dr. Martin Hoffert

Former Exxon Consultant

Professor Emeritus, Physics

New York University

Dr. Naomi Oreskes

Professor, History of Science

Affiliated Professor, Earth and Planetary Sciences

Harvard University

Sharon Eubanks, Esquire

Of Counsel

Henderson Law Firm, PLLC

Mandy Gunasekara (minority witness)

Founder, Energy 45

Senior Fellow, Life: Powered Project


Click here to watch Chairman Raskin’s opening statement.

Click here to watch Rep. Pressley’s question line.

Click here to watch Rep. Gomez’s question line.

Click here to watch Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s question line.

116th Congress