Googling climate change? You might see fossil fuel ads

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Fossil fuel companies and their close allies are some of the top spenders on Google ads that look similar to search results, according to a new analysis by The Guardian and climate think tank InfluenceMap.

The two groups searched for 78 terms related to climate change on Google and then looked at the ads that popped up on the platform. Of more than 1,600 ads, over one in five were from companies “with significant interests in fossil fuels.” The top twenty advertisers included fossil fuel giants ExxonMobil, Shell, and Aramco. Consulting firm McKinsey and investment firm Goldman Sachs, which have been criticized for working with fossil fuel companies, were also big spenders.

“Google is letting groups with a vested interest in the continued use of fossil fuels pay to influence the resources people receive when they are trying to educate themselves,” InfluenceMap senior data…

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