From Shell to Goldman Sachs: In web searches on the climate crisis, 1 in 5 paid ads for oil and gas companies

We are looking for words like “net zero”And ‘Fossil fuels’And “cracking” For information on issues related to the ongoing climate crisis, but from the search engine (also) Paid ads. on more 1,600 ads Published on Google and analyzed in Search conducted by the British newspaper guardian The Independent Thought Foundation Impact on the map, related to 78 keywords related to climate issuesAnd More than one in five have been entered by companies with strong interests in fossil fuels. So they pay to ensure that when a user searches for information, their ads are shown, often difficult to distinguish from normal search results. As a Google spokesperson recalls, one was launched recently New policy ‘that would explicitly ban ads that promote climate change denial’. But the “transition” does not seem so easy.

“Endemic Green Wash” – The danger, according to research analysts conducted by the newspaper and the research center, is “endemic green wash.” ExxonMobil, Shell, Aramco, McKinsey and Goldman Sachs It was among the top 20 advertisers for search terms, but many ads were also placed by other fossil fuel producers and their supporters. Secondly Jake Carbone, Senior Data Analyst at InfluenceMap “Google allows groups interested in the continued use of fossil fuels to pay to influence” the content that people access when they search for information on certain topics. Having abandoned the strategy to challenge the science of climate change, the strategy of the oil and gas sector now “is to influence public discussions about decarbonization in its favour.”

Advanced Google Analytics – for example Shell oil company ads (153) counted Appears in 86% of searches for the expression ‘net zero’, i.e. net zero emissions. Many of these announcements cemented their commitment to align themselves with the 1.5°C warming goal and become a “net zero” company by 2050. However, the goal they hope to achieve, Through the mechanisms of carbon capture and compensation. Just thinking that Shell has announced Increase in the purchase of credits of carbon from forestry projects will reach 120 million tons per year by 2030. As calculated 114 advertisements from the Saudi state oil company, Aramco, the world’s largest oil exporter, by searching the search engine for keywords such as “carbon sequestration” and “energy transition”. Some of these ads are written by the journalist Niamh McIntyre — He stated that the company “promotes biodiversity” and “protects the planet.” But it’s not just the oil companies. Ads for consulting firm McKinsey have appeared in more than eight out of 10 searches about the “energy transition” and we’re talking about a company, according to The New York Times, in recent years offered its services to 43 of the 100 most polluting companies in the world.

Limited effects to date of Google policy – As a Google spokesperson stated, a new policy was launched recently that “will explicitly ban ads that promote climate change denial” and which “applies to all advertisers, including energy companies and financial institutions”. Indeed, already in October, given the United Nations Global Climate Summit in November, Google has pledged to remove ad rejection from its platform. Stated goal: “To stop everything that contradicts the unified scientific consensus on the existence and causes of climate change.” However, in mid-December, it was Digital Hate Center, a London-based non-profit group, said it reckons at least 50 new climate denier articles on 14 different websites, all published after November 9, when the new Google policy was supposed to go into effect. Some of these content has identified global warming as a hoax. After the results of the analysis, cited by the New York Times, were published, Michael Asseiman, a Google spokesperson, said the company has reviewed and approved the relevant pages Appropriate enforcement actions.

Harold Manning

"Infuriatingly humble social media ninja. Devoted travel junkie. Student. Avid internet lover."

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