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Amazon and Google Help Fund Climate Change Denial Gala

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While the public and shareholders are increasingly advocating for governments and corporations to do something, anything, to combat climate change before Florida is completely underwater, there are still some people out there who aren’t sure this whole “earth is getting warmer” thing is real. For those people, there is the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free-market research organization in Washington dedicated to the idea that this whole climate change thing is silly and overblown. While it’s not news that organizations like that are out there, it is surprising who wants to be buddies with them. Party Down The C.E.I. recently held a Game of Thrones-themed gala, which...ok. Listed on the invite as sponsors were the usual right-wing and fossil fuel groups, including the Charles Koch Institute and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers. But the sponsor list also had some eye-browing raising names, including major corporations like Google and Amazon, two companies that have both publicly said they’re committed to combating climate change. Money Talks A spokesperson for Google said that despite the company’s donation, “We’ve been extremely clear that Google’s sponsorship doesn’t mean that we endorse that organization’s entire agenda,” and Amazon issued a similar denial, adding that its $15,000 contribution to the event “will help advance policy objectives aligned with our interests.” Trust Falls So why were they involved? Well, maybe the Tyrion-inspired wine list was just too good to pass up. Or maybe it’s that C.E.I. also opposed antitrust laws, an issue dear to the heart of tech CEOs everywhere. Amazon employees have been pushing the company to do more than just say they’ll combat climate change, and recently they’ve been using their stocks to push the company to do more. Employees and shareholders might have to nudge the company to make them think harder about who they are partying with. -Michael Tedder Photo: Brendan McDermidREUTERS

While the public and shareholders are increasingly advocating for governments and corporations to do something, anything, to combat climate change before Florida is completely underwater, there are still some people out there who aren’t sure this whole “earth is getting warmer” thing is real. For those people, there is the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free-market research organization in Washington dedicated to the idea that this whole climate change thing is silly and overblown. While it’s not news that organizations like that are out there, it is surprising who wants to be buddies with them. Party Down The C.E.I. recently held a Game of Thrones-themed gala, which...ok. Listed on the invite as sponsors were the usual right-wing and fossil fuel groups, including the Charles Koch Institute and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers. But the sponsor list also had some eye-browing raising names, including major corporations like Google and Amazon, two companies that have both publicly said they’re committed to combating climate change. Money Talks A spokesperson for Google said that despite the company’s donation, “We’ve been extremely clear that Google’s sponsorship doesn’t mean that we endorse that organization’s entire agenda,” and Amazon issued a similar denial, adding that its $15,000 contribution to the event “will help advance policy objectives aligned with our interests.” Trust Falls So why were they involved? Well, maybe the Tyrion-inspired wine list was just too good to pass up. Or maybe it’s that C.E.I. also opposed antitrust laws, an issue dear to the heart of tech CEOs everywhere. Amazon employees have been pushing the company to do more than just say they’ll combat climate change, and recently they’ve been using their stocks to push the company to do more. Employees and shareholders might have to nudge the company to make them think harder about who they are partying with. -Michael Tedder Photo: Brendan McDermidREUTERS