In January, Reality Blurred reported that Rowe was completely frank on his new show that it was sponsored by "the oil and natural gas industry." But to actually watch the blatant shilling is shocking, though not surprising, says Dharna Noor, who started watching because she read that the show was funded by the American Petroleum Institute (the oil and gas industry’s biggest trade group) and Distribution Contractors Association (a lobbying group for fossil fuel pipeline contractors). "Watching this unfold on screen, I nearly fell out of my chair," says Noor. "It turns out Rowe shouts out the oil and gas industry in some capacity in every episode. I couldn’t believe he was so up front about it. But as jarring as it was to hear him praise the industry that is largely responsible for frying the planet, this sponsorship makes sense. It fits right in with the industry’s current favorite media strategy: Reminding us that their products are used in everything." As Noor points out, Rowe already started a parallel career as a pundit going on Fox News to openly speak out against regulating oil and gas extraction. “He’s to the oil and gas industry what Ronald Reagan was for General Electric, a charming pitch man,” Adam Johnson, the co-host of the podcast Citations Needed, wrote her in an email. In an email, a spokesperson for Discovery+ said that Six Degrees is the only program on the network that is funded by advocacy or trade groups, adding that big oil doesn't have any creative input. “This sponsorship was simply to get production started,” he said. “There was no creative input or influence on the series.” Noor adds: "But it’s clear why the industry itself would want to sponsor this kind of endeavor now. Public concern about the climate crisis is growing. The Biden administration has imposed new regulations limiting extraction, and organizers who correctly state these moves are insufficient are pressuring officials to do far more. There’s also the reality that climate change poses an existential threat if left unchecked. And the fastest way to reduce carbon emissions is to wind down the fossil fuel industry while simultaneously protecting the workers Rowe says he stands in support of. From Six Degrees, though, you’d never know that phasing out fossil fuels is a necessary step to securing working people a livable future."