Friday, October 29, 2010

Koch Industries War with the EPA

Koch Industries has been at war with the EPA for decades. Rather than accept the EPA's science based approach to managing climate change, Koch funds organizations that fabricate their own facts and publish propaganda papers that pose as credible academic information. Armed with a blatent disregard for the facts, Koch industries is fighting the EPA on initiatives ranging from efforts to reduce surface Ozone, to the classification of formaldehyde as a carcinogen.

Some truly absurd statements have come out of the Koch created think tank known as the Mercantus Center. In response to the EPA move to reduce surface ozone in 1997, Susan Dudley, a senior official at the Mercatus Center, argued that smog actually benefits humans because it reduces the incidence of skin cancer.

Koch Industries is taking on the EPA and they are mustering all the support they can buy to divest the agency of their regulatory powers.

Rather than pursue legislation that could force Koch Industries into line with the facts or protect the EPA from the Kochs' assaults, many members of the House and the Senate seem to share the Koch agenda.

Last June, forty-seven of the Senate's 100 senators voted to permanently strip the EPA of its power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. Some legislators are planning another attempt at passing legislation that would suspend the EPA's regulation of greenhouse gases.

A good illustration of the scope of Koch Industries influence involves their resistance to the EPA's attempt to classify formaldehyde as a “known carcinogen.” Koch Industries has been lobbying to prevent this from happening. It is no coincidence that the company produces formaldehyde in great quantities.

The ownership of Koch Industries is not deterred by the experimental evidence indicating that formaldehyde causes cancer. When you are the owner of one of the world's most powerful corporations you wield tremendous power and you have access to the levers of power.

David Koch, the owner of Koch Industries, disagrees with the science on formaldehyde, and this is a point which he argues from his position on the National Cancer Advisory Board.

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