Oil Change International

Exposing the true costs of fossil fuels

Koch brothers fund fight against California climate law

koch-industries Earlier this year Greenpeace published an excellent report showing that the secretive and arch conservative billionaire Koch brothers were the main funders of leading right wing climate sceptic organisations.

Since then it has emerged that Koch brothers are bank-rolling the ultra-conservative tea party in the US.

Koch industries is also, of course, the #1 provider of dirty energy money in the US Congress. Now it has also been revealed that that the brothers have contributed $1 million to the campaign to suspend what is known as AB 32, California’s landmark climate change law.

Basically the brothers are funding efforts across the country that coincide with their ultra-right wing, climate sceptic, anti-government agenda.

They have promised even more to promote Proposition 23, which is a ballot initiative that seeks to suspend the Global Warming Solutions Act – a law that would force the power industry in California to cap greenhouse gas emissions.

With this latest contribution, proponents of the proposition have raised $8.2 million, with $7.9 million not surprisingly coming from energy companies, most of them not even from California.

Other out-of-state donors include Texas-based Valero Energy Corp., Texas-based Frontier Oil Corp, and the Utah-based Western Petroleum Marketers Association.

In fact only one group donating to the Yes campaign in the last month – the California American Council of Engineering Companies Issues Fund – is from California.

But it is Koch’s financial involvement that has people worried.

“This is a significant game changer,” argues Craig Holman, from Public Citizen.  “They want to stop the state that’s well known for leading the way when it comes to climate change legislation.”

“It would have big implications,” adds George Shultz, the former Secretary of State, who is a chairman of a campaign to defeat the ballot initiative. “That is one reason why these outside companies are pouring money in to try to derail the same thing. At the same time, the reverse is true: they put this fat in the fire and if we win, that also sends a message.”

Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, who is rallying support against the proposition, called it “by far the single most important ballot measure to date testing public support for continuing to move to a clean energy economy.”

Those opposing Proposition 23 also include Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who passed the original law four years ago.

So now the oil industry is targeting Arnie too, calling him an “environmental zealot”.

Charles Drevna, the president of the National Petrochemical Refiners Association, said in a fund-raising e-mail recently:

“We’ve raised about $6 million so far, but unfortunately in California’s expensive media market this is not enough to win the fight against environmental zealots led by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who seems hell-bent on becoming the real-life Terminator of our industry,”

Don’t worry Mr Drevna, it is you and your pals in the oil industry who are the real terminators …

Comments (2)

  1. For factual information on Koch Industries efforts to support jobs and lower energy costs in California , please visit http://www.kochfacts.com.

  2. Tell the Truth says:

    We need to educate as many people as possible to look VERY CAREFULLY at who is protecting Oil Profits and FUNDING the Tea Party, Republicans, and your elections. The Koch brothers and others big money IS THREATENING OUR DEMOCRACY.

    See:

    1. Koch-Funded Organizations Launch New Campaign To Protect Big Oil Profits
    http://blogs.alternet.org/speakeasy/2010/09/01/koch-funded-organizations-launch-new-campaign-to-protect-big-oil-profits/

    2. Covert Operations: The billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama. The New Yorker, August 30, 2010.
    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/08/30/100830fa_fact_mayer?currentPage=all#ixzz0xfxJXs9S

    3. The Billionaires Bankrolling the Tea Party – NY Times
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/opinion/29rich.html
    The Koch brother’s agenda is morphing into the Republican agenda. “Their program calls for a freeze on federal regulations in an era when abuses in the oil, financial, mining, pharmaceutical and even egg industries (among others) have been outrageous.”

    4. Oil company owned by Tea Party’s billionaire brothers gives $1 million to fight California’s climate change law
    http://www.mercurynews.com/rss/ci_15993066?source=rss&nclick_check=1

    5. Koch brothers give $1M to back Proposition 23
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39006674/ns/us_news-environment/

    6. Koch brothers fund fight against California climate law
    http://priceofoil.org/2010/09/17/koch-attacks-california-climate-laws/

    7. Koch Industries Funds Attack on Science Linking Formaldehyde and Cancer
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kevin-grandia/koch-industries-funds-att_b_707616.html

    8. Voter Beware: Concentrated Corporate Power Is Creating Deceptive Elections
    http://dissidentvoice.org/2010/08/voter-beware-concentrated-corporate-power-is-creating-deceptive-elections/

    ACTION PLAN:

    1. Blog about this everywhere! Comment on the stories. Cross-post to Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites.

    2. CALL AND WRITE TO YOUR SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES. Inform them of the Koch brothers. Send them the link to the articles above. Ask them to take action. You can find your legislators’ contact information here: http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml

    3. PLEASE DISSEMINATE THIS INFORMATION EVERYWHERE! It is not being reported in the traditional media. Please cross post on — Facebook, Twitter, blogs, all of your contacts, etc.

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