Monday, November 29, 2010

The Corporate Climate Coup

In case you missed it, the Cancun climate summit will soon begin.

I have lots here on the blog on the subject of man-made global warming.
I went from being a believer to being a questioner.

In honour of people who question just who it is that will really benefit from the Carbon Economy.
I am going to link to The Corporate Climate Coup an olderarticle (2007), that you may or may not have seen, but that does not make it any less relevant considering the Cancun summit will begin shortly.

For who benefits from this look to the financial industry, banksters, Wall St., Petro-chemical companies, nuclear power, Genetically modified food mutant food producers....etc., etc.,
For who doesn't, look in the mirror.

This is long, so I am going to excerpt only

Don't breathe. There's a total war on against CO2 emissions, and you are releasing CO2 with every breath. The multi-media campaign against global warming now saturating our senses, which insists that an increasing CO2 component of greenhouse gases is the enemy, takes no prisoners: you are either with us or you are with the "deniers." No one can question the new orthodoxy or dare risk the sin of emission. If Bill Clinton were running for president today he would swear he didn't exhale.
The convergence of the global justice movement and Kyoto, however, prompted some of the elite to rethink and regroup, which created a split in corporate ranks regarding the issue of climate change. Defections from the GCC began in 1997 and within three years had come to include such major players as Dupont, BP, Shell, Ford, Daimler-Chrysler, and Texaco. Among the last GCC hold-outs were Exxon, Mobil, Chevron, and General Motors. (In 2000, the GCC finally went out of business but other like-minded corporate front organizations were created to carry on the "negative” campaign, which continues.)
Those who split off from the GCC quickly coalesced in new organizations. Among the first of these was the Pew Center for Global Climate Change. Funded by the philanthropic offering of the Sun Oil/Sunoco fortune. The board of the new Center was chaired by Theodore Roosevelt IV, great grandson of the Progressive Era president (and conservation icon) and managing director of the Lehman Brothers investment banking firm. Joining him on the board were the managing director of the Castle-Harlan investment firm and the former CEO of Northeast Utilities, as well as veteran corporate lawyer Frank E. Loy, who had been the Clinton administration's chief negotiator on trade and climate change.

At its inception the Pew Center established the Business Environmental Leadership Council, chaired by Loy. Early council members included Sunoco, Dupont, Duke Energy, BP, Royal Dutch/Shell, Duke Energy, Ontario Power Generation, DTE (Detroit Edison), and Alcan. Marking their distance from the GCC, the Council declared “we accept the views of most scientists that enough is known about the science and environmental impacts of climate change for us to take actions to address the consequences;” “Businesses can and should take concrete steps now in the U.S. and abroad to assess opportunities for emission reductions. . . and invest in new, more efficient products, practices, and technologies." The Council emphasized that climate change should be dealt with through "market-based mechanisms” and by adopting “reasonable policies,” and expressed the belief “that companies taking early action on climate strategies and policy will gain sustained competitive advantage over their peers."

Early in 2000, “world business leaders" convening at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland declared that “climate change is the greatest threat facing the world.” That fall, many of the same players, including Dupont, BP, Shell, Suncor, Alcan, and Ontario Power Generation, as well as the French aluminum manufacturer Pechiney, joined forces with the U.S. advocacy group Environmental Defense to form the Partnership for Climate Action. Like-minded Environmental Defense directors included the Pew Center's Frank Loy and principals from the Carlyle Group, Berkshire Partners, and Morgan Stanley and the CEO of Carbon Investments. Echoing the Pew Center mission, and barely a year after the “battle of Seattle" had shut down the World Trade Organization in opposition to the corporate globalization regime, the new organization reaffirmed its belief in the beneficence of market capitalism. “The primary purpose of the Partnership is to champion market-based mechanisms as a means of achieving early and credible action on reducing greenhouse gas emissions that is efficient and cost-effective." Throughout its initial announcement this message was repeated like a mantra: “the benefits of market mechanisms," “market-oriented rules," “market-based programs can provide the means to simultaneously achieve both environmental protection and economic development goals,” "the power of market mechanisms to contribute to climate change solutions.” In the spring of 2002, the Partnership's first report proudly stated that “the companies of the PCA are in the vanguard of the new field of greenhouse gas management.” “The PCA is not only achieving real reductions in global warming emissions,” the report noted, "but also providing a body of practical experience, demonstrating how to reduce pollution while continuing to profit.”

This potential for profit-making from climate change gained the avid attention of investment bankers, some of whom were central participants in the PCA through their connections with the boards of the Pew Center and Environmental Defense. Goldman Sachs became the leader of the pack; with its ownership of power plants through Cogentrix and clients like BP and Shell, the Wall Street firm was most attuned to the opportunities. In 2004 the company began to explore the “market-making” possibilities and the following year established its Center for Environmental Markets, with the announcement that “Goldman Sachs will aggressively seek market-making and investment opportunities in environmental markets;" The firm indicated that the Center would engage in research to develop public policy options for establishing markets around climate change, including the design and promotion of regulatory solutions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The firm also indicated that Goldman Sachs would “take the lead in identifying investment opportunities in renewable energy;” that year the investment banking firm acquired Horizon Wind Energy, invested in photovoltaics with Sun Edison, arranged financing for Northeast Biofuels, and purchased a stake in logen Corporation, which pioneered the conversion of straw, corn stalks, and switchgrass into ethanol. The company also dedicated itself “to act as a market maker in emissions trading” of CO2 (and SO2) as well as in such areas as “weather derivatives,” "renewable energy credits," and other “climate-related commodities.” “We believe," Goldman Sachs proclaimed, “that the management of risks and opportunities arising from climate change and its regulation will be particularly significant and will garner increasing attention from capital market participants.”

Among those capital market participants was former U.S. Vice President AI Gore. Gore had a long-standing interest in environmental issues and had represented the U.S. in Kyoto. He also had equally long-standing family ties with the energy industry through his father's friendship with Armand Hammer and his financial interest in Hammer’s company Occidental Petroleum, which the son inherited. In 2004, as Goldman Sachs was gearing up its climate-change market-making initiatives in quest of green profits, Gore teamed up with Goldman Sachs executives David Blood, Peter Harris, and Mark Ferguson to establish the London-based environment investment firm Generation Investment Management (GIM), with Gore and Blood at its helm. In May, 2005 Gore, representing GIM, addressed the Institutional Investor Summit on Climate Risk and emphasized the need for investors to think in the long term and to integrate environmental issues into their equity analyses. "I believe that integrating the issues relating to climate change into your analysis of what stocks are worth investing in, how much, and for how long, is simply good business,” Gore explained to the assembled investors. Applauding a decision to move in this direction announced the day before by General Electric's CEO Jeff Immelt, Gore declared that “we are here at an extraordinarily hopeful moment. . .when the leaders in the business sector begin to make their moves.” By that time Gore was already at work on his book about global warming, An Inconvenient Truth, and that same spring he began preparations to make a film about it.
there is more, much more. Hope you read it!


  1. Well I gotta say, just keeping an eye on the msm comment sections, it is clear that this gig is up for most thinking people (ie those without a vested interest). Sure there are the diehards, but for the most part what I have seen is a dramatic shift to the 'Denier' side in the last year.

    This is GOOD.

    If people start to see the lie in AGW, then they will also begin to see the lies elsewhere. We all start somewhere on our voyages into the rabbit hole. For me it was the draconian laws surrounding cannabis which got me questioning many other so-called truths.

    Once eyes are open it is very hard to shut them again.


  2. Hey Buffy: this david noble fellow wrote an interesting book regarding Israel also.