Exxon may be about to pocket millions in Iraq, but still its lackey’s are determined to derail climate legislation in the US.

Energy companies and other business interests in the US have launched a nationwide campaign of misinformation to try and undermine climate change legislation pending in Congress, saying it could cost millions of jobs, drive gasoline prices sharply higher and suck thousands of dollars from household incomes.

The effort comes as the Senate prepares to take up in coming months a bill that would cut greenhouse emissions by up to 65 percent by 2050. On a 17-state tour that began this week with stops in North Dakota and Montana, industry-funded economists said the legislation threatens to sacrifice three to four million jobs over the next two decades, as higher energy prices dampen industrial production.

One of those is long-term climate sceptic Margo Thorning, chief economist with the American Council for Capital Formation, whose funders include ExxonMobil. “The link between economic growth and energy can’t be broken,” Thorning said. “There will be cutbacks in production, losses in productivity.”

Thorning’s appearance was sponsored in part by the electric utility PPL Montana and MDU Resources, a North Dakota-based oil and gas company. The campaign is also being funded by the US Chamber of Commerce.

So the business dinosaurs are still grazing…