Rising Tide North America, a loose-knit group of students and workers for nonprofit organizations, posed as phony public relations officials and targeted energy reporters around the world on Monday with e-mails and telephone calls claiming that a legitimate group of 33 businesses and environmental groups, the United States Climate Action Partnership, had agreed to slash emissions, blamed for warming the earth, by 90 percent by 2050 and had called for a moratorium on new coal plants, Reuters reports.
Rising Tide activists said they had done dozens of interviews with media and even received calls from real USCAP member companies about the website and press release. At least two media outlets, The Dallas Morning News and the New Zealand Herald, ran the story. You can see the Dallas Morning News’ take on the hoax here.
The group backed up their press release by setting up Web sites for a phony public relations company and another claiming to be the new U.S. CAP site, using its official logo.
USCAP members include General Electric, DuPont, Alcoa, Caterpillar, Duke Energy, PG&E, FPL Group, PNM Resources, BP, and Lehman Brothers.