Koch brothers team with ALEC to attack renewable energy

And North Carolina is a likely battleground:

The Heartland Institute, a libertarian think tank skeptical of climate change science, has joined with the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council to write model legislation aimed at reversing state renewable energy mandates across the country. The Electricity Freedom Act, adopted by the council’s board of directors in October, would repeal state standards requiring utilities to get a portion of their electricity from renewable power

Here's a copy of the model (cookie-cutter) Legislation, which is riddled with misleading information and outright lies, such as:

WHEREAS, many renewable sources of power currently cost more than traditional electricity generation technologies, and are projected to do so for the foreseeable future

Those state legislatures who created and voted for Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards (REPS) knew from the outset that clean and renewable energy generation cost more than the old dirty and dangerous methods. One of their main goals was to jump-start the sector, and through volume and technological advances actually reduce the costs associated. And it's working very well:

Total shipments of PV modules in 2011 hit a record high, increasing from 2,644,498 peak kilowatts (kWdc1 peak) in 2010 to 3,772,075 peak kilowatts (Figure 1 and Table 3). This represents a nearly 43-percent increase from 2010. Growth was spurred, in part, by declining PV cell and module prices (Figure 2 and Table 4) caused by competitive pressures.

So if something is working as designed, and the benefits to our society are obvious, why would there be such fierce opposition? Because renewable energy is by its very nature distributed, making mega utilities less relevant, and it also has the potential to put the fossil fuel industry on a strict fiscal diet. We're talking billions in profits, encouraging millions in investment in astro-turf and pseudo-science:

But the involvement of the Heartland Institute, which posted a billboard in May comparing those who believe in global warming to domestic terrorist Theodore J. Kaczynski, shows the breadth of conservatives’ efforts to undermine environmental initiatives on the state and federal level. In many cases, the groups involved accept money from oil, gas and coal companies that compete against renewable energy suppliers.

As part of its effort to roll back renewable standards, ALEC is citing economic analyses of state policies co-published by Suffolk University’s Beacon Hill Institute and the State Policy Network. Both groups have received donations from foundations funded by the Koch brothers.

“You push the legislation to state legislators and then you fund reports to support the argument and convince state lawmakers,” Elsner said, “and all without any transparency or disclosure about the sources of this funding.”

David G. Tuerck, executive director of the Beacon Hill Institute and chair of Suffolk University’s economics department, said Koch funding did not determine the report’s conclusions about renewable energy.

“Koch certainly has not had the only role in funding these studies,” Tuerck said, adding the other donors had asked to remain anonymous.

Really? The fact that there are other secret donors is supposed to make us feel more secure about your "research"? Apparently integrity isn't the only thing missing from this "Institute". There seems to be a gaping void where logic used to reside, as well.


I'm afraid that's a job

I'm afraid that's a job that's being left to us. Start kicking!

117 politicians who are

117 politicians who are members of ALEC lost their seats this year. People want renewables, so this may well lead to more of ALEC's toxicity rubbing off on the remainder.

One can hope

It should cost them their seats. If for no other reason than their eagerness to trade their responsibilities as elected officials for the comfort of a lobbyist's embrace.

For the life of me, I can't understand how any clear-thinking individual could vote for a person who allows (and helps) corporations write our laws for us. Especially voters who claim to be concerned about protecting our Constitution and individual rights and such.

When you hand over the power to write laws to those who have not been elected, we have a Republic in name only.

The truth

So ... via the correction that is now at the top of this Washington Post story, Ms. Eilperin was in error about The Heartland Institute's funding by at least a factor of 10 on Exxon and an astonishing 400 on the Kochs. Can we agree that is not a small thing — even if it blows up the false narrative peddled around here that Heartland is heavily funded by fossil fuel interests?

The vast majority of Heartland funding comes from individuals, foundations, and corporations without a financial stake in the climate change or renewable energy debates. For 28 years, Heartland has promoted free-market solutions in many areas of domestic policy — education, health care, budgets, taxes, finance, insurance, legal affairs, technology, and more. On the environment, like on every issue, Heartland promotes scientists and scientific studies that are skeptical of AGW alarmism out of principle. The Heartland Institute has compiled thousands of pages of peer-reviewed studies in two volumes (with another on the way) toward the end of finding out what is really happening to the Earth's climate, and why.

How about we deal with the science?




Jim Lakely
Director of Communications
The Heartland Institute
Chicago, Illinois

For 28 years, Heartland has been "for hire"

to create and (attempt to) legitimize opposing views for all sorts of issues. That diversification of propaganda is what has kept you going for so long, but it's definitely not proof of any sort of purity on your part.

And as far as your "science" is concerned:

Billboards in Chicago paid for by The Heartland Institute point out that some of the world's most notorious criminals say they "still believe in global warming" – and ask viewers if they do, too…The billboard series features Ted Kaczynski, the infamous Unabomber; Charles Manson, a mass murderer; and Fidel Castro, a tyrant. Other global warming alarmists who may appear on future billboards include Osama bin Laden and James J. Lee (who took hostages inside the headquarters of the Discovery Channel in 2010).

These rogues and villains were chosen because they made public statements about how man-made global warming is a crisis and how mankind must take immediate and drastic actions to stop it.

You might want to get your apparently grossly overpaid idea men to look up the term cum hoc ergo propter hoc, before you lose all your misguided donors.

It's actually very ironic (even funny) that he tried twice to

link to Heartland's climate documents and both links go to "page not found". I find it exceedingly appropriate that their climate "science" is entirely absent.

Also, you'd think a communications guy could set up a link properly. Shoddy work all around.

anti gerrymandering petition can be found at ... http://wh.gov/iaUnX


Since you don't actually reveal your donors and the amounts they contribute, including millions from anonymous donors, your "rebuttal" has no more validity than the original claim.

With all due respect

... this is utter bullshit.

On the environment, like on every issue, Heartland promotes scientists and scientific studies that are skeptical of AGW alarmism out of principle.

Just what principle is it that you're talking about? The principle of corporate dominance over public good (aka free-market solutions)?

As you suggest, how about we deal with the science instead of your agenda?

Heartland’s latest idea, the documents say, is a plan to create a curriculum for public schools intended to cast doubt on mainstream climate science and budgeted at $200,000 this year. The curriculum would claim, for instance, that “whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy.”

It is in fact not a scientific controversy. The vast majority of climate scientists say that emissions generated by humans are changing the climate and putting the planet at long-term risk, although they are uncertain about the exact magnitude of that risk. Whether and how to rein in emissions of greenhouse gases has become a major political controversy in the United States, however.

Nice try.

Watch out for the egg nog, Jim

Dearest earnest Jim,

So sorry that the nice folks at Blue NC are causing you at the Heartburn Institute some indigestion. if you re going to drink too much eggnog, make sure to buy you some Tums first. Those generic Tums are no good. they are made from Chinese leftovers from burning coal to make us nice toys for Christmas and Happy Meals. I sure do love me the cheeseburger Happy Meal, don't you?

It sure does take a lot science to make a Happy Meal, but why can they not go ahead and put a Tums in that meal? Even little kids need some medicine in addition to the toy. Taco Bell should come with Immodium or at least Peptones Bismol. If that was real beef at Taco Bell it would stay in your body more than 20 minutes, am I right? Of course!

Am so happy that the folks working to keep us from heartburn are finally standing up to the liberal media. How about you find some way to make coal ash into Tums! Or maybe Preparation H, since that seems to be the orifice with which you are most familiar. Think athat you can be the spokesman for cream to spread on infllamed anuses. Heartburn Institute can make Tuck's pads!

Lazlo Toth