Using trademarks more similar to hackers, a group of climate activists are claiming that they tricked a US lobby - as well as some media - ahead of the United Nations climate change meeting that began yesterday in Bali, Indonesia.
According to a press statement received from Rising Tide, "Climate activists with the international Rising Tide network embarrassed the U.S. Climate Action Partnership (USCAP), a lobby group composed of 33 prominent businesses and organizations, by distributing a spoof press release declaring that the consortium’s members had committed to a 90 percent reduction in their greenhouse gas emissions by 2050."
The note further said that "the spoof release called for an immediate moratorium on the construction of all new coal-fired power plants."
“To stabilize our climate, reductions need to be based on science, not on creating windfall profits for the world’s largest polluters,” said Matt Leonard. “Leading scientists say decisive action must happen now to reduce our emissions. However, corporate interests have stymied substantive action and are derailing genuine efforts of civil society to adequately address climate change.”
According to the Rising Tide statement, "The fake press release was picked up by several media outlets, including the Dallas Morning News, UK Hemscott and several blogs before journalists realized that USCAP members would never agree to such progressive reductions in carbon emissions or a moratorium on coal plants."
Rising Tide said it used the phony website www.climateactionpartnership.org to distribute the release, which mimicked USCAP’s site, www.us-cap.org. Rising Tide said that they will now transition their site "into an archive of environmental misdeeds and human rights abuses of USCAP’s members."
However, the Rising Tide website is not currently available. A message reads, "Tinyhosts.com are sorry to say .... your website has been suspended."
Rising Tide admitted in the statement that "the hoax was timed to coincide with the opening of a major United Nations climate summit in Bali in an effort to expose the disproportionate influence of large corporations on the climate negotiations and the lack of initiative from corporations on reducing fossil fuel use."
“USCAP says it is serious about stopping climate change, but these companies have not put their money where their mouth is,” said Brian Sloan of Rising Tide North America. “It’s time to base our policies on science and the safety of our communities, not on someone’s bottom-line.”