The tech sector plays a unique role in the debate over climate change because of its ability to control the flow of information or misinformation about climate change through algorithms that determine the content and products to which its customers are exposed. The tech sector is also notable for its relatively ambitious net-zero goals, with Microsoft, for example, pledging to become carbon negative by 2030 and remove its historical emissions by 2050.

Running contrary to these pledges is the practice of employing lobbyists who also work for the fossil fuel industry. In 2022, Apple shared two Idaho lobbyists with TC Energy, developer of Canadian tar sands oil. This oil has been called some of the dirtiest oil in the world and these tar sands represent one of its biggest unexploded “carbon bombs,” a resource whose development would jeopardize any chance of limiting global warming to 1.5° C. Microsoft and Meta each shared two lobbyists with the Idaho Power Company, and Meta shared one with Avista.

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