Climate Newspeak

Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, the president of COP28 who also happens to be CEO of the UAE’s state oil company, made this and other disturbing remarks while speaking with three women at a She Changes Climate event. “Polarization” has become a weasel word for bad actors to stop legitimate criticism. The fact that we’re seeing it used by an oil CEO to deny climate science should set off alarm bells. The term erases differences in power, places dominant and marginalized groups on the same plane, and implies a false equivalence between violent movements and vulnerable people trying to defend themselves. In this case we see it being used to provide cover for corporate interests that are harming all of us. 

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Jen Sorensen is a cartoonist for Daily Kos, The Nation, In These Times, Politico and other publications throughout the US. She received the 2023 Berryman Award for Editorial Cartooning from the National Press Foundation, and is a recipient of the 2014 Herblock Prize and a 2013 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. She is also a Pulitzer Finalist.



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