Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is now the latest state prosecutor to start investigating conservative groups with supposed ties to ExxonMobil, after she issued a subpoena for 40 years of internal company documents and communications with a handful of think tanks.
Healey’s office subpoenaed Exxon as part of a multi-state effort among liberal attorneys general to investigate Exxon for allegedly trying to cover up global warming science. Healey charges that the oil giant lied to shareholders and consumers about the risks of global warming in its communications and shareholder filings, according to a copy of the subpoena obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Healey demands decades worth or records from prominent conservative think tanks, including the Heritage Foundation and activist group Americans for Prosperity, and also from smaller, lesser known state-based right-leaning groups, such as Boston’s Beacon Hill Institute and the Acton Institute.
In April, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) said that the attorney general of the US Virgin Islands is demanding to see records of the think tank's donors and activities involving climate policy.
Naomi Oreskes, professor at Harvard and co-author of a history of climate skepticism called Merchants of Doubt, said that the history of climate denial can be traced back to a think tank called the George C. Marshall Institute. That think tank, which was established in 1984, was founded by a former tobacco industry consultant.