The Trump administration, ironically, has an email problem. We know Donald Trump used an alias to call reporters and brag about his own sexual exploits, and now we've learned that his Secretary of State had his own secret account for something that he wanted to avoid admitting—the risks to the oil and gas business posed by climate change.
From at least 2008 to 2015, Sec. Rex Tillerson, previously the CEO of ExxonMobil, sent messages from an email account using the name "Wayne Tracker," when discussing the risks of climate change, according to a Monday court filing by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Schneiderman is investigating Exxon for fraud during the decades in which it suppressed its own knowledge of climate change and publicly disputed climate science. He subpoenaed documents that, he says in the Monday filing, Exxon has not turned over. The company also never disclosed the existence of the Wayne Tracker email account. (Much like Trump used his middle name John for his alter ego John Barron, Wayne is Tillerson's middle name.)
"Tillerson's use of a secret email account underscores what we've been saying all along: Exxon knew their product causes climate change"
Exxon has been aggressively uncooperative with Schneiderman's investigation, suing in a Texas court to quash it and another investigation being conducted by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey. That action, and Exxon's related accusation that Healey's meeting with environmental activists is collusion, prompted one of the company's own corporate ethics advisors to resign last month.
Climate change activists say this latest revelation shows the extensiveness of Exxon's deceitfulness. "Tillerson's use of a secret email account underscores what we've been saying all along: Exxon knew their product causes climate change, but buried the truth in order to protect their profits," said Jamie Henn, a spokesman for 350.org, the climate action group, in a statement.
"If they had nothing to hide, than why the secret email account?…There's likely far more deception just below the surface."