In 1998, as nations around the world agreed to cut carbon emissions through the Kyoto Protocol, America’s fossil fuel companies plotted their response, including an aggressive strategy to inject doubt into the public debate. “Victory,” according to the American Petroleum Institute’s memo, “will be achieved when average citizens ‘understand’ (recognize) uncertainties in climate science… Unless ‘climate change’ becomes a non-issue… there may be no moment when we can declare victory.” The memo, later leaked to The New York Times that year, went on to outline how fossil fuel companies could manipulate journalists and the broader public by muddying the evidence, by playing up “both sides” of the debate and by portraying those seeking to reduce emissions as “out of touch with reality.” Nearly 25 years later, the reality of a changing climate is now clear to most Americans, as heatwaves and wildfires, rising sea levels and extreme storms become […]