Jun 9, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Top Biden aide prods big tech to crack down on climate change misinformation

Photo of Gina McCarthy at an Axios live event

Gina McCarthy, President Biden's top domestic climate adviser, said tech companies should do more to prevent the spread of inaccurate information about climate change and clean energy.

Driving the news: "The tech companies have to stop allowing specific individuals over and over again to spread disinformation," she told Axios' Alexi McCammond at a virtual event that aired Thursday.

  • "We need the tech companies to really jump in," McCarthy said.

The big picture: McCarthy said that overall, the problem of disinformation has shifted from disputing the reality of climate change to inaccurate claims about the feasibility and benefits of moving away from fossil fuels.

  • "Now it has moved from denial, but the dark money is still there. The fossil fuel companies are still basically trying their best to make sure that people don't understand the challenge of climate," she said.
  • "Now, the challenge really is, how do we accelerate the solutions we have available to us, the technology improvements that we've seen that are most cost-effective, in fact cost-competitive with fossil fuels."
  • "And what the industry is now doing is seeding, basically, doubt about the costs associated with that and whether they work or not."

Catch up fast: Major platforms including Facebook, Google and YouTube have unveiled new efforts in recent years to attempt to deter circulation and steer users to accurate information.

Twitter said in April that it's toughening efforts to prevent "misleading advertisements" that "contradict the scientific consensus on climate change."

Watch the full event here.

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