Chevron PR Firm Launches ‘News’ Sites in Journalism-Starved Regions

The Chevron refinery in Richmond, California
The Chevron refinery in Richmond, California on April 20, 2020. Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
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A PR firm working for Chevron is operating websites made to appear like local news outlets in regions, particularly in Texas’ Permian Basin, experiencing a rapid decline in legitimate local news outlets, Gizmodo reports.

San Francisco-based Singer Associates, which also operates a similar outlet in Richmond, California, where Chevron operates a refinery that dumps oil into San Francisco Bay and pollutes the nearby community. The websites enable Chevron to disseminate industry-friendly greenwashing into a region suffering from a dearth of reliable local news.

One-third of local Texas newspapers have closed in the last two decades, and the news vacuum Chevron’s “outlets” fill is especially pronounced in the Permian Basin, where 20% of counties have no local news sources and another 69% have only one — often just a weekly paper.

“People turn to whatever news source is in front of them,” Maddie Kriger, a consultant for Climate Power, told Gizmodo. “For a site like this, it seems like Chevron wanted a site where disinformation could be dressed up.”

For a deeper dive:

Gizmodo

For more climate change and clean energy news, you can follow Climate Nexus on Twitter and Facebook, sign up for daily Hot News, and visit their news site, Nexus Media News.

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