Correction: this post listed KS Sen. Julia Lynn as a supporter of the RPS freeze–she is not and her name was removed below.
A recent flood of Koch-supported think tanks, junk scientists and astroturf groups from inside and outside of Kansas are awaiting the outcome of a bill this week that could stall progress on the growth of clean energy in Kansas.
States around the country, including Texas, Ohio, Missouri and North Carolina are poised to cut back on government support for clean energy jobs using model legislation from the American Legislative Exchange Council. ALEC, which brings companies together with state lawmakers to forge a wish list of corporate state laws behind closed doors, is coordinating this year’s assault on state laws that require a gradual increase of electricity generated by clean energy sources.
ALEC and a hoard of other Koch-funded interests operating under the umbrella of the State Policy Network have hit Kansas legislators hard with junk economic studies, junk science and a junk vision of more polluting energy in Kansas’ future. Koch Industries lobbyist Jonathan Small has added direct pressure on Kansas lawmakers to rollback support for clean energy.
This fossil fuel-funded attack ignores the good that wind energy has done for Kansas, a state known for its bipartisan support for its growing wind industry (see key report by Polsinelli Shughart). The state now has 19 operating wind farms that have brought millions to farmers leasing their land and millions more to the state, county and local levels (NRDC). The American Wind Energy Association says that Kansas wind industry jobs have grown to 13,000 with the help of incentives like the renewable portfolio standard.
Unfortunately, clean energy is not palatable to the billionaire Koch brothers or the influence peddlers they finance. Continue reading
The U.S. State Department released its draft environmental assessment of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline last Friday afternoon as we entered our weekends. Some of us were stunned as we watched Congress do nothing to tame the indiscriminate cuts in public jobs from the “sequester,” including hundreds of millions of dollars cut from environmental programs and protections. The announcement was further buried by today’s highly-anticipated appointments of EPA administrator Gina McCarty and Dept. of Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, whom some beltway insiders speculated would be appointed last week.
While the State Department’s draft environmental impact statement acknowledges that tar sands oil production is more carbon intensive than conventional oil, the 2,000 page document seems like an easy excuse for President Obama to approve the pipeline without seeming hypocritical for breaking his State of the Unions promises on climate change.
The climate doesn’t care how any message is framed if we’re still dumping millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere like a global industrial sewer. Greenpeace’s Point of No Return report includes Alberta’s tar sands among the largest carbon fuel reserves on the planet, with potential for 420 million metric tons in annual CO2 emissions by 2020.
State Dept. says Keystone XL won’t increase tar sands production…Oil Industry Says the Opposite Continue reading
PolluterWatch: Greenpeace Investigates Heartland Institute Leaked Documents – click to see investigation and ongoing updates.
As Greenpeace questions universities about payments to faculty members from the Heartland Institute for its campaign to discredit climate science, we have made some interesting discoveries. Our newest letter is to the University of Missouri concerning professor Anthony Lupo, who leads the schools Global Climate Change Group and is slated to receive a total $18,000 from the Heartland Institute from 2011-2012 as a consultant for “Climate Change Reconsidered” reports. As you would expect from a Heartland Institute project, these reports are designed to confuse the scientific conclusions of 97% of climate researchers around the world.
While credible climate scientists and institutions have understood global warming for decades now, Anthony Lupo’s position on climate has fluctuated significantly. A thorough article in the Kansas City Pitch back in 2008 revealed the following evolution of Dr. Lupo’s public statements on global warming:
- In 1998, Tony Lupo boasted that climate skeptics outnumbered the consensus view that global warming is happening and caused by people, proclaiming, “there is no scientific consensus whether global warming is a fact and is occurring.” This is despite the fact that in 1995 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said “the balance of evidence suggests a discernible human influence on global climate.” Dr. Lupo has participated in the IPCC as a reviewer, one of the few scientists involved who rejects the IPCC’s research conclusions.
- In 2000, Dr. Lupo cited an influential oceanographer calling for more study on global warming in “recent statements”…after the oceanographer had been dead for nine years.
- Continue reading