Logo for Climate Social Science Network (CSSN)

News and Research

CSSN Scholar Publications

Big Oil’s ‘Wokewashing’ is the New Climate Science Denialism

September 16, 2021

CSSN scholars Robert Brulle, William Lamb, and Timmons Roberts are featured in The Guardian on Big Oil’s new obstruction tactics.

“These campaigns fall into what a handful of sociologists and economists call ‘discourses of delay’. While oil and gas companies have a long track record of denying climate change, even after their own scientists repeatedly warned of the harm caused by burning fossil fuels, now the industry’s messaging is far more subtle and in many ways more effective than outright climate science denial.

By downplaying the urgency of the climate crisis, the industry has new tools to delay efforts to curb fossil fuel emissions. And worse yet: even industry critics haven’t fully caught up to this new approach.”