U.S. foundations are now spending over $1 billion a year to advance the global warming agenda – an amount several orders of magnitude bigger than the sums spent promoting climate change skepticism.
The eyewatering sum is revealed in an investigation, conducted by Chris Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, into some of secret forces and nefarious methods pushing the climate change agenda in the U.S. and beyond.
What the report clearly demonstrates is that – regardless of President Trump’s attempts to introduce an element of scientific rigor and economic practicality to America’s climate and energy policies – a powerful, richly funded and determined Green Blob is working to undermine the Administration’s efforts at every turn.
Among the familiar names involved in the scheme are former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, disgraced former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, three left-leaning state governors – Andrew Cuomo (New York), Jay Inslee (Washington) and Jerry Brown (California), plus, of course the inevitable Al Gore. The institutions involved include fake-neutral, pretend-scientific green activist group the Union of Concerned Scientists, Harvard Law School and the Rockefeller Family Fund.
One of the more dubious schemes exposed in the study – the result of numerous FOI requests from highly reluctant institutions – was a plan to encourage the offices of sympathetic Attorneys General to push through climate change legislation by secretly providing them with off-the-books staffing funded by green-aligned non-profits.
The report argues that these arrangements were at best dubious and possibly illegal.
Those public records reveal the anatomy of what began as an “informal coalition” of AGs to use the legal system in pursuit of an overtly political agenda in coordination with activists and plaintiffs’ lawyers. That coalition disbanded under open records and media scrutiny, but it has now reconstituted through a program by which donorsfund, privately hire, andplace investigators and prosecutors in AG offices. It uses a nonprofit organization to pass the funding through and to provide the OAGs with a network of “pro bono” attorneys and public relations services. In return, OAGs provide office space to the privately hired prosecutors; agree they are there to “advanc[e] progressive clean energy, climate change, and environmental legal positions”; and provide regular reports about their work.
Led and funded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, this scheme hires “Research Fellows,” which it then places as activist “Special Assistant Attorneys General.” All of the participating OAGs had to promise that this work would not get done but for this private funding. All OAGs also certified they are not violating the law by accepting privately funded prosecutors. At best, as several OAGs tacitly admit, this unprecedented arrangement operates in a gray area with neither prohibition nor authority. One state where the scheme is arguably illegal is New York, where disgraced former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman had a leading and organizing role at every stage of the campaign this paper describes.
The New York OAG openly boasted to a donor that its “need” for privately funded prosecutors was driven in part by the “significant strain on staff resources” that had been caused by its “non- litigation advocacy”—that described as its having “led” the resistance to the Trump administration. Importantly, the NYOAG also cited its campaign “building models for two different types of common law cases to seek compensation” from industries for supposedly having caused global warming; moreover, it “needs additional attorney resources to assist with this project.”On these bases and with a claim to having statutory authority to enter the unprecedented arrangement—a claim which on its face appears to be an invention—the NYOAG was awarded not one but two privately underwritten prosecutors.
The report begins by quoting an email which reveals the full extent of private funding for Green Blob activities in the US:
“Before you gasp please note that foundations are currently spending over $1 billion a year on climate work.” So wrote Dan Carol, a senior aide to California Governor Jerry Brown (D), on October 3, 2017, to his colleagues and staff members for New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) and Washington Governor Jay Inslee (D) regarding charitable foundation spending that promotes their climate policy agenda (see Figure 1). This figure dwarfs spending in opposition to that agenda—efforts to portray matters otherwise notwithstanding.2
Carol offered this sum to make his case that $50 million per year is reasonable to ask so donors can privately underwrite an off-the-books network of “support functions” for a handful of governors’ climate policy advocacy.
In further support of his position, Carol attached a “draft agenda, presentation slides, and budget worksheet.”Those items are among a large cache of public records that were obtained by the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), along with other public policy groups, and that detail and propose the exploitation of a “plethora of funder interest” in secretly bankrolling the public office holders’ use of their positions to take a more aggressive role concerning climate politics and policy.
This years-long campaign by substantial, left-leaning donors revealed in Carol’s email correspondence and in other emails produced under state open records laws has now expanded into dangerous and likely unconstitutional territory. Led and funded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, this scheme centers
on paying to place activist attorneys—dubbed State Assistant Attorneys General (SAAGs)—in offices of the attorney general (OAGs) to play an agreed, predetermined, and activist role.
Clearly this Green Swamp is going to require a lot of draining…