Greenpeace and Stand.Earth recently spent thousands to place misleading advertisements in Le Devoir and the Ottawa Citizen repeating the fiction that Resolute’s litigation is about “trying to silence” the radical environmental organizations. The ads mislead readers about both the nature of our case and our business.
This isn’t about freedom of expression. It’s about holding Greenpeace accountable for a campaign of misinformation that continues, despite Greenpeace’s own admissions that its serial attacks against our company were “hyperbole,” “heated rhetoric,” and “non-verifiable statements of subjective opinion” that “do not hew to strict literalism or scientific precision.”
We’ve submitted versions of this letter to the editors of those publications so that their readers understand Greenpeace’s distortions in full context.
Letters to the Editor
Le Devoir / Ottawa Citizen
Your publication recently published a full-page ad from the radical environmental organization Greenpeace and its ally Stand.Earth, repeating their egregiously hypocritical claim that our efforts to hold them accountable for their slanders amount to an “attack on public discourse [and] free speech.”
But a simple Google search reveals Greenpeace has been enthusiastically on the side opposing free expression in the two biggest legal cases in U.S. courts in recent years.
Specifically, they have publicly denounced the United States Supreme Court ruling in favor of free speech in the Citizens United case, standing against the American Civil Liberties Union, the Free Speech Defense & Education Fund, the Institute for Justice, the California First Amendment Coalition, and some of the largest trade unions and political groups across the political spectrum. Moreover, they applauded government lawyers for launching a legal assault against groups Greenpeace opposes, using the very same approach their ad now claims is an assault on “the very heart of our democratic society.”
Readers would be right to ask Greenpeace how they square this apparent contradiction. One answer comes from the group’s own web site, where they justify their stance by declaring “Freedom of speech does not apply to misinformation and propaganda.” We quite agree with the sentiment, but Greenpeace seems to think it only applies to its own conduct.
As our legal filings document, Greenpeace has spent years on a campaign of public misrepresentations about our forestry practices—impersonating employees, initiating cyber-attacks on our customers, and harassing companies we do business with, including by threatening them with similar smear campaigns.
But we’ve forced Greenpeace to retract some of its false claims about us, and to admit in legal filings that its serial attacks against our company were “hyperbole,” “heated rhetoric,” and “non-verifiable statements of subjective opinion” that “do not hew to strict literalism or scientific precision.” That’s why we’ve taken them to court, and why we won’t waver in holding them accountable for their actions.
Corporate Communications, Sustainability & Government Affairs
Resolute Forest Products