by Max Brantley
The fight over global warming continues, as opponents of better regulation of greenhouse gases attempt to get a platform at the Capitol. The recent flurry of criticism of the state's commission on global warming has tended to overlook the source of much of that criticism -- industry-financed shills for energy companies, if not energy executives themselves.
An environmental activist provides some background. He says:
These groups were HIRED to come to Arkansas and try to discredit the GGWC. This is an obvious joke of an attempt by a very desperate group of energy sectors that believe Arkansas is the place where they can deceive and get away with it. Some background:
Cooler Heads is a Washington D.C. front group for Consumer Alert and National Consumer Coalition, which according to their own website, “are industry friendly groups that oppose regulations on industry and advocate " free market " consumer solutions.” It’s obvious that the people and groups attacking science and the GGWC are hired guns for energy industry that is fighting any progressive changes for the future and wants to go down swinging.
Its website states: "The risks of global warming are speculative ; the risks of global warming policies are all too real." Originally the group was closely tied to the Competitive Enterprise Institute , another front backed by the petroleum industry. Former CEI director Marlo Lewis chaired the Cooler Heads Coaltion. Myron Ebell , CEI's Director of Global Warming and International Environmental Policy, directed it. In March 2001, the nonprofit Clean Air Trust named Ebell its "clean air villain of the month," citing his "ferocious lobbying charge to persuade President Bush to reverse his campaign pledge to control electric utility emissions of carbon dioxide."
Center for Science and Public Policy Institute
THIS IS IN NO WAY AFFILIATED AND NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE WHICH IS THE NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION DEALING WITH HEALTH AND DIRECTED BY DR. GEORGE CARLO. THE TWO ARE COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT ENTITIES.
The Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI), formerly the Frontiers of Freedom 's Center for Science and Public Policy promotes the views of global warming skeptics. The website links to two other skeptic websites - the Heartland Institute 's global warming page and the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change . SPPI describes itself as "a nonprofit institute of research and education dedicated to sound public policy based on sound science."
"Free from affiliation to any corporation or political party, we support the advancement of sensible public policies for energy and the environment rooted in rational science and economics. Only through science and factual information, separating reality from rhetoric, can legislators develop beneficial policies without unintended consequences that might threaten the life, liberty, and prosperity of the citizenry."
Robert Ferguson is the President of the Science and Public Policy Institute , formerly the
Frontiers of Freedom Center for Science and Public Policy, an organization that promotes the views of global warming skeptics. Greenpeace's ExxonSecrets website states that "Ferguson set up the Center for Science and Public Policy in early 2003, after a $100,000 grant from ExxonMobil in 2002 - specifically tagged for the center. Exxon has continued to fund the Center each year since then, to the tune of at least $50,000 a year."
A biographical note states that he "has 26 years of Capitol Hill experience, having worked in both the House and Senate. He served in the House Republican Study Committee , the
Senate Republican Policy Committee ; as Chief of Staff to Congressman Jack Fields (R-TX) from 1981-1997, Chief of Staff to Congressman John E. Peterson (R-PA) from 1997-2002 and Chief of Staff to Congressman Rick Renzi (R-AZ) in 2002. He has considerable policy experience in climate change science, mercury science, energy and mining, forests and resources, clean air and the environment. His undergraduate and advanced degrees were taken at Brigham Young University and George Washington University, respectively."