New York's attorney general is accusing Exxon Mobil of lying to investors about how profitable the company will remain as governments impose stricter regulations to combat global warming.
The complaint says that in order to account for future climate change regulations, Exxon told the public it was applying an estimated cost -- or "proxy cost" -- of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to its investment decisions.
But the complaint says that instead, Exxon applied lower or no proxy costs for years when making investment decisions or assessing its oil and gas reserves.
The complaint says Exxon claimed its oil and gas reserves face little risk of becoming too expensive to operate and that the company would be able to profitably exploit those assets well into the future.
The other, a greenhouse gas cost, reflects actual costs that could be imposed on emissions of oil and gas projects as a result of a specific jurisdiction's laws.