Banned by Big Oil — Jo Nova’s Christmas speech for geologists cancelled by Woodside
By Jo Nova:
So much for being “funded by fossil fuels” — they not only don’t fund me, Big Oil won’t even let me speak
In March I was invited to present the FESAus Christmas function in December this year. They’re the Formation Evaluation Society of Australia, a non-for-profit volunteer organisation for Petrophysicists and Well Log Analysts. A niche technical club of experts. It was unpaid, but I was happy to help make it a fun and push some buttons. “Hot” graphs, cartoons and all.
But in June, suddenly it became controversial to make jokes about climate change. Committee members started resigning, and dummy-spit declarations were made that “a discussion about climate was stupid”. People were shaken. The chips were on the table, the members said “yes” but the committee was split. When decision time came, the key committee meeting was hijacked by an outsider from Woodside who turned up by surprise and darkly threatened that all funding or support for the professional organisation and all future speakers from Woodside would be withdrawn if that climate denier, Jo Nova, was allowed to speak.
It was Woodside or me…
So my presentation was cancelled, and by Woodside no less. What’s astonishing is the effort someone inside this 4 billion dollar revenue giant went to — to stop an unpaid blogger from speaking to a low profile, small technical organisation, with little, as in, almost zero, media influence. Seriously? As if a group of experienced geos were at risk of being badly influenced by yours truly — there are people who analyze seismic logs and signatures of key stratigraphic surfaces for fun. Does Woodside think they need “protection”? Or is Woodside just running chicken itself? Scared of the Western Australian EPA, which is currently calling for submissions, and promising draconian guidelines that threaten to kill off the industry? Woodside need the EPA to approve all their new projects. Petrophysicists might be almost all skeptical, but some either work for Woodside or hope too. Woodside are the largest operator of oil and gas production in Australia.