Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Right-wing think tanks and fossil fuel industry in collusion on climate denial




Well once again this should come as no surprise. The current uproar and charge over climate change involving hacked emails from the University of East Anglia is being led by a well funded conglomerate of American right-wing think tanks, whose purpose is to confuse, feed lies and misinformation, and champion delaying the curbing of climate change. This campaign has been ongoing for well over a decade, since the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol, orchestrated by the free-market worshipping right-wing think tanks (who previously championed the Iraq War and got everything wrong), who trot out so-called "experts" who not only question but attempt to debunk or play down the scientific evidence of climate change. Their purpose is to attempt to place doubt into the public's and government's perception and understanding of the issue, and delay as long as possible the introduction and implementation of clean, green home grown, renewable energy sources.

So, why are right-wing think tanks doing this? They're conducting this despicable and immoral campaign because they have deep ties and receive financial support from the fossil fuel industry. The following outlines some of the right-wing think tanks involved and their sources of funding:

Center for a Constructive Tomorrow: runs and owns ClimateDepot.com, one of the main platforms for right-wing climate change denial. The site is managed by Marc Morano, who was once an aide to chief climage skeptic and fossil fuel champion (as well as financial recipient) Republican Senator James Inhofe. The Center for a Constructive Tomorrow has received funding from Exxon Mobil, Chevron, and right-wing groups with fossil fuel industry connections such as the Carthage Foundation and the Sarah Scaife Foundation.

American Enterprise Institute: The AEI once made an offer to pay "experts" $10,000 to author reports which countered climate change evidence and the IPCC reports. AEI has received millions of dollars from ExxonMobil, and former Exxon Chairman Lee Raymond is a member of the AEI's board of directors.

Media Research Center: operated by Brett Bozell, this organization also runs the popular right-wing blog Newsbusters.org. Since 1998, the Media Research Center has received over $257,000 from ExxonMobil.

Cato Institute: This think tank often uses climate change denier Patrick Michaels to spew their pro-fossil fuel industry agenda. The Cato Institute receives funding from Koch Industries Inc. (the largest private energy company in the United States). David Koch is a member of the board of directors of the Cato Institute.

Heartland Institute: For the past three years, this right-wing think tank has organized an annual "denier conference". While it used to receive funding from ExxonMobil, the Heartland Institute still receives money from tobacco companies.

Heritage Foundation: This think tank has received considerable funding from ExxonMobil.

National Center for Policy Analysis: It's a small but active Dallas-based think tank, and since 1998 it has received over half a million dollars in financial conbributions from ExxonMobil.

Competitive Enterprise Institute: This organization is very adamant in its support for climate change denial and it has received millions from ExxonMobil since 1998.

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