squandered decades

John F. Kennedy was not yet president
'”Love Me Do” and “Come On” were still yet to be released as singles
six years until Marines would set foot in Vietnam
ten years until mankind would make that giant leap
but, in 1959, Big Oil already knew the devastating impact of their products

Big Oil deliberately kept the world in the dark by misinformation and deceit
what if one of those CEOs had decided to pour massive amounts of research funding into renewables?
to realize and act on their gigantic business case
to move on the moral implications of their products
instead, a few captains of industry squandered decades
for billions of people in their battle with global warming


In February 2021, Benjamin Franta of Stanford University was one of the presenters during a TEDx event. The question ‘How long has the fossil fuel industry known about global warming?’ was at the center of his research and presentation. This poem poses the question what if the fossil fuel industry CEOs had acted on renewable energy instead of going down the path of misinformation.