Big Business money sabotages science-based climate policy

This 2015 video from the USA says about itself:

BUSTED…Koch Brothers caught funding climate deniers

Kert Davies, Climate Investigations Center joins Thom Hartmann. New documents show that one of America’s top climate change deniers has received over a million dollars from Big Oil and the Koch Brothers. What does that say about how far Big Oil is willing to go to promote lies about climate change and global warming?

From ScienceDaily:

Money talks when trying to influence climate change legislation

New research examines the amounts different sectors spent on lobbying on climate-related issues in the US between 2000 and 2016

July 18, 2018

Climate lobbying is big business. A new analysis shows that between 2000 and 2016, lobbyists spent more than two billion dollars on influencing relevant legislation in the US Congress. Unsurprisingly, sectors that could be negatively affected by bills limiting carbon emissions, such as the electrical utilities sector, fossil fuel companies and transportation corporations had the deepest pockets. Their lobbying efforts dwarfed those of environmental organizations, the renewable energy industry and volunteer groups. These results are published in Springer’s journal Climatic Change in a study led by Robert J. Brulle of Drexel University in the US.

Brulle analyzed data from mandatory lobbying reports made available on the website Open Secrets. …

The sector that spent the most on climate change lobbying was the electrical utilities sector, at 554 million dollars (26,4 per cent of all climate change lobbying expenditure) over the 16-year period studied. The fossil fuel sector spent 370 million dollars and the transportation sector spent 252 million dollars during this time. In contrast, the efforts of environmental organizations and the renewable energy sector each only constituted about 3 per cent of climate lobbying expenditures. This was significantly overshadowed by the spending of the sectors engaged in the supply and use of fossil fuels by a ratio of 10:1.

“The vast majority of climate lobbying expenditure came from sectors that would be highly impacted by climate legislation”, Brulle explains. “The spending of environmental groups and the renewable energy sector was eclipsed by the spending of the electrical utilities, fossil fuel, and transportation sectors.” …

Brulle says that this has important implications for the fate, outcome and nature of future climate legislation, which is largely determined by intra-sector and inter-industry competition. He says that the activities of environmental organizations and non-profit organizations often constitute one-time, short-term mobilization efforts. This is a shortcoming, given the vast expenditures and continuous presence of professional lobbyists.

Lobbying is conducted away from the public eye. There is no open debate or refutation of viewpoints offered by professional lobbyists meeting in private with government officials”, explains Brulle. “Control over the nature and flow of information to government decision-makers can be significantly altered by the lobbying process and creates a situation of systematically distorted communication. This process may limit the communication of accurate scientific information in the decision-making process.”

24 thoughts on “Big Business money sabotages science-based climate policy

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