During his tenure as CEO of Exxon Mobil, Rex Tillerson adopted the alias "Wayne Tracker" to send and receive emails connected to climate a change, the NY attorney general's office revealed.
"Media reports indicating that emails to or from this address were exclusively for climate-related topics are false", the statement reads.
Schneiderman's office requested that the court order Exxon to produce documents related to the accounts. The move failed to stop the investigation, however.
The e-mails that were provided allowed the attorney general to figure out that Tillerson used the account between 2008 and 2015 at least, but it didn't appear on Exxon's list of accounts for which records were preserved.
NY will seek to question top Exxon Mobil Corp. executives under oath as part of a probe into the accuracy of the company's statements about climate change after discovering an email alias used by former Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson.
The secondary email account was discovered while Schneiderman's office was reviewing other Exxon documents.
Naomi Ages, who heads Greenpeace's climate liability project, questioned whether Tillerson misled shareholders and the public on the risks posed by burning fossil fuels while-from the privacy of his Wayne Tracker account-he discussed those risks more plainly.
"It could be misleading to not tell the attorney general the actual owner of that email address", said Cohen, who isn't involved in the dispute. "The very fact the attorney general's office has these emails is because they were produced in response to the subpoena".
"If they had nothing to hide, than why the secret email account?" said Jamie Henn of 350.org, an environmental group.
The alias address was created, Jeffers explained, to make priority communications more efficient, since Tillerson's main email address received thousands of emails from both internal and external sources, including spam campaigns from activists.
Really, though, the Wayne Tracker incident isn't too surprising, given the confusing times we live in.
Exxon plans to respond to Schneiderman in a court filing within the next several days, Jeffers said. He had been Exxon Mobil's chairman and CEO since 2006. After several years of investigation, the OAG found that Peabody had violated NY securities laws by making false and misleading statements to shareholders, regulators, and the public about the financial risks it faced from global action on climate change. Shortly afterwards, based on the same legal theory, the OAG launched its investigation into Exxon.