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California Sues Big Oil — Poster of the Week

Governor Newsom Stop New Oil Permits

Oree Originol

Last Chance Alliance

Digital Print, Circa 2019



Oree Originol, an artist and activist working in San Francisco, designed this poster for Last Chance Alliance, an alliance of more than 900 public health, environmental justice, climate, and labor organizations, working to convince California Governor Gavin Newsom to stop granting new permits to drill for oil.

In 2021, Newsom took steps to phase out oil extraction by announcing a halt of fracking permits by January 2024, and requested that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) research pathways to phase out oil extraction completely by 2045.

Two weeks ago, the state of California took the fight against oil one giant step further and sued five of the world’s biggest oil companies: Exxon Mobil, Shell, BP, ConocoPhillips, and Chevron. California is both one of the world’s leading producers of oil and gas and on the front lines of a multitude of climate change disasters. In the past year alone, California has experienced nearly every climate catastrophe possible—including tornadoes and hurricanes! A lawsuit of this magnitude is significant to both Californians and people worldwide.

The lawsuit alleges that the cited companies have continued to mislead the public regarding risks posed by fossil fuels since the 1950s when such risks and their relation to global warming were first beginning to be understood. Scientists began warning oil executives as early as 1977 that carbon emissions were posing a dire risk to humanity. Posters warned of climate change much earlier. Exxon launched an intensive research study into the matter, but scrapped it in the late 1980s and instead chose to sow confusion and doubt about climate change. Oil companies continue to downplay the danger to this day, with some promoting “eco-friendly” gasoline—green-washing at its most cynical!

The state of California is now suing Big Oil to pay their fair share in recovery efforts from climate-change caused natural disasters, protect people from the health impacts of extreme heat, manage dwindling water supplies caused by drought, and fortify infrastructure against rising sea levels and flooding.

California taxpayers—and people all over the world—have been suffering the consequences and footing the bill for the destruction caused by climate change. It’s time for the oil industry to pay for their lies and deceptions.



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