Google’s Support of Climate Change Denial Shocks Science Advocates

July 9, 2013

The Center for Inquiry expressed deep disappointment with Google, which has reportedly given tens of thousands of dollars to groups and individuals actively engaged in misleading the public about the reality of climate change.

In June, Google was the largest single donor to a fundraising dinner for the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), giving $50,000, according to the Washington Post. CEI is an organization that denies the threat of global warming on behalf of energy interests, and who infamously ran television ads dismissing the fact that carbon dioxide (CO2) is a pollutant. (“They call it pollution, we call it life,” says the narrator.)

This Thursday, July 11, Google is scheduled to host at its Washington, DC offices a fundraising lunch for Oklahoma’s Sen. James Inhofe, perhaps the most ardent climate change denier in Congress, who has said that more CO2 in the atmosphere would be “beneficial to our environment and the economy.”

“We are shocked and deeply disappointed by Google’s association with these so-called ‘climate skeptics,’” said Michael De Dora, director of the Center for Inquiry’s Office of Public Policy. “Google declares that its mission is to ‘organize the world’s information,’ but in financing those who hawk science denial, Google is only serving as a loudspeaker for misinformation.”

“Global warming is a fact confirmed by an enormous body of observations from many different sources,” writes Dr. Stuart Jordan, formerly of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, in a position paperfor the Center for Inquiry. “The probability is extremely high that human generated greenhouse gases, with carbon dioxide the major offender, are the primary cause of well documented global warming and climate change today.”

Google, on its website, claims to believe, “You can make money without doing evil,” and “Don’t be evil” has long been an unofficial motto for the powerful technology company.

Said De Dora, “Whatever other interests Google is pursuing in funding these groups and individuals, it is engaging in a malevolent act by aiding those who are dedicated to misleading the public regarding matters of scientific consensus.  There is perhaps no entity on the planet with more influence over what can be seen and read on the Internet than Google, and the entities they choose to support should be of concern to us all.

“The Center for Inquiry calls upon the individuals working at Google to examine their consciences, cancel the event with Sen. Inhofe this week, and cease any further donations to those promoting harmful nonsense.”