As disruption from the human-caused climate crisis worsens, there will be a great debate over who is responsible for failing to respond in a timely way.
The fossil fuel industry will promote the notion that we are all responsible for climate change, and that they are simply meeting a consumer need. But this ignores the industry’s role in manipulating public opinion, its regulatory capture of government agencies, and the advanced knowledge it had of the harms caused by extracting and burning carbon and methane.
Congress should form a tribunal with subpoena powers to investigate the role of big oil, gas, and coal corporations in funding and fomenting climate denial, lobbying to block energy alternatives, and thrusting humanity onto a path toward an uninhabitable earth.
Chuck Collins is a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies where he co-edits Inequality.org. His latest book is a novel, “Altar to an Erupting Sun,” an eco-fiction exploration of the causes of climate disruption.