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World’s Largest PR Firm Quits the Fossil Fuel Lobby

Shilling for Big Oil has become a hard job.

Edelman PR, the world’s largest public relations firm, has finally relieved themselves of the increasingly quixotic task of representing America’s oil lobby. For more than a decade, Edelman has flacked for the American Petroleum Institute (API), a trade association that, according to their website, “traces its beginning to World War I, when Congress and the domestic oil and natural gas industry worked together to help the war effort.” But here in the 21st century, as the consensus around climate change’s dire reality has calcified into accepted fact, the struggle to portray the oil business in a positive light has become an uphill slog. The relationship between burning fossil fuels and climate change is well documented; the response from petroleum producers has been to fund an entire industry to deny this established connection. In August, a Motherboard piece took on Edelman and API, highlighting the partnership’s underhanded efforts to perpetuate climate change denial:

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Mess in Texas: Holding Big Oil Accountable in the Lone Star State

In unincorporated West Texas, where oil derricks dominate the landscape, locals aren't sure about "drill, baby, drill" anymore.

As I approach Midland, Texas from the southeast the rolling hills give way to large, engine-revving trucks, their menacing grills reflecting the setting sun into my rearview mirror. The asphalt beneath my white Toyota Corolla seems to be melting into the petroleum-laden ground from which it had emerged: Not even the road was prepared for the heavy vehicles that showed up with the recent oil and gas boom.

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