Friday, April 30, 2010

Codexis IPO Bodes Well for Cleantech

On Earth Day, biofuel firm Codexis Inc (CDXS) became the first green initial public offering (IPO) this year and this bodes well for other clean technology (cleantech) firms. Last year the initial public offering of lithium-ion battery maker A123 Systems (AONE) spiked share prices by 50 percent and forced investors to take notice of green IPOs.

Codexis was incorporated on January 2002 and they focus on biocatalyst development efforts in markets which include pharmaceuticals and biofuels. Enzymes developed by Codexis make industrial processes cleaner and faster. They are also pursuing funded collaborations in several other bio-industrial markets including carbon management, water treatment and chemicals.

On the day the Codexis IPO went public, (Thursday, April 22), Codexis raised $78 million by selling 6 million shares for $13 each. Shares of Codexis went up 2 percent on Thursday to close at $13.26, then rose to $14.04 on Friday, before falling to 13.50 a week later (as of the close on Thursday, April 29).

Although Codexis received a mixed response from investors, this may be due to several factors including the fact that the company has yet to earn a profit. It may also be due to the type of technology Codexis is involved with rather than an indictment of cleantech IPOs. Biofuels have questionable efficacy due to their effect on global food supplies as well as their emissions profile. Compared to other cleantech sectors like wind and solar, biofuels have major disadvantages.

However, analysts are saying that the fact that it was able get a deal done at all is a positive sign for the green sector. "It's a very bullish and positive signal," said Sheeraz Haji, President of Cleantech Group, which tracks the green market. "It got out at a valuation that was acceptable. It signals that there is a hunger in public equity investors for cleantech IPOs."

Matt Therian, analyst with Connecticut-based Renaissance Capital said, "Codexis getting a deal done shows that there is demand for cleantech IPOs," he said. "There is risk appetite out there."

Some of the companies that postponed their IPOs earlier this year are once again planning to enter the market. In Februrary 2010, Chinese solar company JinkoSolar put its IPO plans on hold, a couple of months later they amended their regulatory filings in preparation to go public.

"You have a lot of good companies just sort of sitting on the sidelines waiting to go public," said Josh Lerner, investment banking professor at Harvard Business School. The venture pipeline is "the strongest it has been in years," he said.

Some of the green IPOs expected later this year include well known electric car maker Tesla Motors, solar company Solyndra and smart grid firm Silver Spring Networks. Many are expecting that green IPOs will see tremendous growth.
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Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Commericialization of Earth Day

Companies are increasingly using Earth Day as a primary marketing vehicle. While some decry the commercialization of Earth Day, others see it as a powerful driver of the green market.

Although Earth Day is celebrated on April 22, many of the commitments made on this day extend throughout the year. One company that is using Earth Day to draw attention to their implementation of year-round greener practices is the AIM Mail Centers franchise.

All of the nearly 90 AIM Mail Centers across the country are aggressive proponents of reuse and recycling programs in their communities. Their shipping department uses only recycled cardboard and paper. The centers also serve as a recycling point for any loose plastic packing material. In addition, the stores also have low-energy lighting technology.

“We take our commitment to the environment very seriously and are always looking for ways to do business in as environmentally friendly a way as possible,” said Michael Sawitz, CEO of AIM Mail Centers.

TD is another company that wanted to make an Earth Day statement. They hurried the inauguration of their prototype of a highly energy-efficient TD bank branch building in Queens to coincide with Earth Day.

Frank Sherman, US green officer for TD Bank said, “Every Earth Day is a reflection of where we are as a culture,” he said. “If it has become commoditized, about green consumerism instead of systemic change, then it is a reflection of our society.”

Some have criticized Earth Day for being overly commercialized, they lament the fact that companies are using the day to communicate their green achievements and ultimately to sell their products and services. However, the profit motive is a hugely influential incentive that is enticing companies to engage in more sustainable practices.
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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Canon Reaffirms Green Procurement Program for Earth Day

Canon Middle East commemorated Earth Day by reaffirming its commitment to purchasing environmentally conscious parts and raw materials.

Mai Youssef, Corporate Communications Manager at Canon Middle East, said: "To commemorate Earth Day, Canon is proud to reaffirm its commitment to the environment and continue our focus on contributing towards sustainable development."

Canon's green procurement program includes a strict set of criteria for all pulp and paper products as well as packaging materials. These measures have enabled the company to reduce its use of resources and minimize its production of waste.

"Canon constantly takes proactive action in promoting environmental sustainability across all areas of our business organization. We are very serious in dealing with the impact of our operations on the environment, particularly in terms of reducing energy use, conserving resources, and eliminating hazardous substances in the procurement of raw materials, parts, and other commercially available products," Youssef said.

Canon is serious about the sustainability of its own operations and they are expanding the green market by encouraging their suppliers to comply with environmental certification systems.

Despite the global economic challenges, Canon has experienced increased demand for greener products. Canon has shown leadership with its sustainability efforts, and these efforts are being driven by consumers, even through a severe recession.
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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

At Target Everyday is Earth Day

Some environmentalists have criticized Earth Day as a one day event, but companies like Target are making Earth Day everyday.

Target strives to be a responsible corporate steward, they seek to understand and reduce their environmental impact. Target is continuously improving their business practices to use resources responsibly, eliminate waste, minimize their carbon footprint, offer a selection of eco-friendly products, incorporate sustainable elements, and influence their vendors and suppliers to embrace sustainable practices.

This is not just an empty sales pitch, Target has achieved a 10% reduction in average store energy usage by converting overhead store lighting in 500 stores. LEDS are being installed in their coolers and store signage going forward. This will result in 40% energy improvement per refrigerated case. In 2009, 20 million delivery miles and 3 million gallons of diesel fuel were saved by increasing the loads on each truck.

Renewable energy is also part of Target's green initiatives. Solar energy generates an average of 15-20% of the energy needs for 21 CA and HI stores.

Target is sponsoring contests to encourage people to be more environmentally sensible. The Drive Home Green sweepstakes gives participants a chance to win a fuel-efficient Ford Fusion Hybrid. Other prizes include a national park trip, electric scooters and bicycles.

Target is amongst a growing number of businesses that are marrying their profit motive to more environmentally responsible practices. Target is positioning itself as a leader and showing that environmental leadership can minimize exposure and contribute to the bottom line.

Some companies are taking bold steps towards sustainability, not merely on one day per year but as part of their daily operating procedures.
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Monday, April 26, 2010

Earth Day 2010: The Business of Green

The first Earth Day was in 1970, it was a grass roots movement by people seeking to protect our environment. Now many leading environmental advocacy organizations accept sponsorships from corporations and these partnerships are helping to change social behavior.

On Earth Day, businesses large and small play varying roles supporting the transition to more sustainable commerce.

Many companies are using Earth Day day as a premier marketing platform for selling a variety of goods and services. Businesses are using Earth day as an opportunity to inform their customers about their environmentally friendly initiatives but the business community is also increasingly leading the way in environmental innovation.

The Earth Day Network and Proctor & Gamble are collaborating on social networks. With the launch of the Billion Acts of GreenTM Facebook and iPhone applications, friends, family and followers are being asked to issue pledges of at least one "act of green" and share it with their Facebook network.

Greenpeace is working with technology giants like Cisco and Google to disseminate information on technologies like videoconferencing and "cloud" computing that can reduce a company's carbon footprint.

With the help of PepsiCo. NYC is reducing its impact on the environment in partnership with Keep America Beautiful, a nonprofit organization, that is introducing "dream machines," recycling kiosks. These machines are meant to increase the recycling rates for beverage containers, which is estimated at only about 36 percent nationwide.

Other smaller enterprises are also taking part. Fore example, across the US gardening businesses went into schools to encourage children to grow vegetables or plants as part of the Earth Day celebrations.

Most businesses are keeping an eye on the demand for environmental offerings. Smart businesses are responding to those seeking greener poducts and practices.

Although we still have a far way to go, increasingly consumers and business are being drawn together by the kind of free market capitalism that will build a more sustainable world.
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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Business for the Environment Global Summit

The fourth annual Business for the Environment Global Summit (B4E), sponsored by the United Nations Environment Program, coincided with Earth Day. The three-day green business conference was held in Seoul, South Korea and featured more than 1,000 attendees, speakers from some of the world’s largest companies, and speeches from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and former vice president Al Gore.

The B4E is the world’s leading international conference for dialogue and business-driven action for the environment. The summit addresses the most urgent environmental challenges facing the world today. Important topics on the agenda include resource efficiency, renewable energies, new business models and climate policy and strategies.

CEOs and senior executives join leaders from government, international agencies, NGOs and media to discuss environmental issues, forge partnerships and explore innovative solutions for a greener future.

On April 21, the first day of the summit topics included the need for a global green economy, helping more consumers realize the importance of green business, sustainable tourism, and how climate change is affecting food stability and poverty across the world.

On April 22, (Earth Day) the conference featured a discussion panel on green entrepreneurship in emerging countries. Discussions included the importance of spurning the entrepreneurial spirit across the globe.

On April 23, the topics on the agenda included ICT’s role in the green revolution, sustainable urban development, and financing of green projects.

The business community is increasingly exploring the diverse ways it can contribute solutions to the environmental crises we are facing.
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Saturday, April 24, 2010

NYSE Green Summit

Many on Wall Street understand that the business world has a big, direct stake in sustainable business. It is no coincidence that this year's Earth Day celebrations coincided with the Euronext and the Yale Chief Executive Leadership Institute's first Green Summit held at the New York Stock Exchange.

The day was filled with top-notch speakers on critical issues, panel discussions and other events. The event featured leaders from the Environmental Protection Agency, United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Department of Energy, and the corporate and academic sectors.

The discussion focused on ways to achieve environmental sustainability and to grow business and the economy through green business.

On the 40th Earth Day event a green summit was held in the heart of the financial sector. As we prepare the way for financial reform, Wall Street appears to be warming to the reality of a more sustainable future.
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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day Tool Kit

Social media is driving Earth Day's phenomenal reach. Thanks to the revolutionary power of digital technologies, Earth Day has grown from 20 million to one billion participants.

The first Earth Day event took place in 1970 and was intended to raise awareness about environmental problems. Decades before the widespread adoption of the PC, the first Earth Day event was able to inspire 20 million people to demonstrate in rallies all across America. Without the help of digital technologies, these demonstrations helped convince Congress to pass major environmental regulations.

Four decades later, Senators John Kerry, Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman are about to introduce their version of the climate change bill that passed in the House last year. This year Earth Day is an opportunity to send a clear message to lawmakers demanding that they pass legislation that encourages a sustainable economy and addresses the climate crisis.

This Sunday, April 25, Earth Day Network will be holding a climate rally in Washington, DC in support of a comprehensive climate and clean energy bill. For those who cannot attend, virtual participation is also welcomed.

Today, on the 40th Anniversary of Earth Hour, social media allows people to disseminate Earth Day messages in ways that could not be imagined in 1970.

There are many virtual resources that merit exploring and sharing. Here is a wide array of Earth Day videos, information and events including links from Earth Day's "Organizing Tools: Earth Day in a Box."

Earth Day Information

Advocacy
Climate Change
Conservation & Biodiversity
Education
Energy
Food & Agriculture
Green Economy
Green Schools
Recycling & Waste Reduction
Sustainable Development
Water

Organizing Tools: Earth Day in a Box

Create a Campaign
Register Your Event Here
Billion Acts of Green
Organizer's Guide
Creating School Gardens fact sheet
Teach about the history of the environmental movement
Religious and Faith Communities
Earth Day on Campus
Adopt-A-Water Project

Earth Day Social Network Presence

Earth Day Network
Earth Day Network Profile at LinkedIn
Earth Day Twitter Mission Control Grid
Earth Day Facebook Page

Earth Day Video / TV

Sustainable Companies Videos
Earth Day Television
History and Explanation of Earth Day
The Tiniest Things Matter
The Fragile Earth
Find Your Inner Burt

Earth Day Photo Sharing

Share your Earth Day video
Share your photos on Earth Day FLICKR group,
email pictures to Earth Day Communications[at]earthday.net

Earth Day Applications

The Facebook application can be accessed on the Earth Day Network page.
The iPhone application can be found on iTunes or on the iPhone App Store .

Earth Day Events Around the Globe

Interactive activities map

Earth Day Events Across Canada

Earth Day Events in British Columbia
Earth Day Events in Alberta
Earth Day Events in Saskatchewan
Earth Day Events in Manitoba
Earth Day Events in Ontario
Earth Day Events in Quebec
Earth Day Events in New Brunswick
Earth Day Events in Nova Scotia
Earth Day Events in Prince Edward Island
Earth Day Events in Newfoundland & Labrador
Earth Day Events in the Yukon
Earth Day Events in the Northwest Territories
Earth Day Events in Nunavut

Other Earth Day Related Events

See a webcast of first Green Summit at the New York Stock Exchange, or follow the event on Twitter.
____________________________________

Next: Business for the Environment Global Summit / NYSE Green Summit / Earth Day 2010: The Business of Green / At Target Everyday is Earth Day

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Earth Day 2010: Life and Death Decisions for Business

On Thursday, April 22, 2010, Earth Day will celebrate its fortieth anniversary. With one billion members and 31,462,291 billion acts of green in 190 countries, Earth Day is the largest secular civic event in the world. However, the environment has suffered serious setbacks due to the world's failure to reach a binding agreement at COP15 and the Senate's inability to pass a comprehensive US climate bill.

While climate change is the greatest challenge of our time, it also presents an unprecedented opportunity to build a healthy, prosperous, clean energy economy now and for the future.

Earth Day can be a turning point to advance climate policy, energy efficiency, renewable energy and green jobs. Millions of individuals, organizations and businesses are making personal commitments to sustainability.

This year, Earth Day is a pivotal opportunity for individuals, governments and businesses of all sizes to join together to push for green jobs, caps for carbon emissions and a sustainable global economy.

Businesses will be held responsible for decisions that impact the environment, and this has implications for the bottom line. Businesses can either prepare for a sustainable future and protect themselves against the risks associated with flouting public opinion or they can wait for repercussions.

Sensible businesses are becoming more efficient and enhancing their competitive positioning through greater environmental sensitivity, the rest risk being tried in the court of public opinion.

Next: Earth Day Tool Kit / Business for the Environment Global Summit / NYSE Green Summit / Earth Day 2010: The Business of Green / At Target Everyday is Earth Day
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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Reigning in Irresponsible Oil Giants Chevron and Exxon Mobil

Big Oil is increasingly under scrutiny as the world is seeking cleaner sources of energy. The Obama administration is working on several fronts to reduce emissions and provide much needed oversight and regulation. Important financial and chemical reforms are being sought by US lawmakers and the EPA has put forward new mileage guidelines.

Although President Obama has denied any direct link, the SEC's fraud charges against Goldman Sachs are part of a new political climate and this is a reflection of the strength of the President's convictions.

In the context of this environment, social media based efforts are also underway to help reign in a couple of the many injustices of the oil giants.

Chevron is responsible for a catastrophe in Ecuador's rainforest known as the "Amazon's Chernobyl." Over the course of twenty-six years of oil drilling in Ecuador, Chevron deliberately dumped more than 18 billion gallons of toxic wastewater into the rainforest, leaving local people suffering a wave of cancers, miscarriages and birth defects.

Within the next year, the outcome of a court case sixteen years in the making will be determined by a court in Ecuador. Chevron has pledged that even if it is found guilty in court the company will not pay to clean up the site or provide health care, potable water and compensation to affected communities.

To demand that Chevron take responsibility for its actions in Ecuador, Change.org is circulating a petition intended for Chevron CEO John Watson telling him to clean up his toxic legacy in Ecuador.

The well know environment destroyer and denier supporter, ExxonMobil made a profit of $19.28 billion last year and avoided paying federal income tax by exploiting foreign tax shelters and taxpayer-funded giveaways.

Tax breaks and subsidies to the fossil fuel industry make it harder for renewable sources of energy to compete in an open market. Sierra has organized a petition that asks Congress to phase out subsidies and tax breaks to Big Oil.

Our dependence on oil puts us in the dangerous position of being beholden to questionable regimes and powerful oil interests that have a proven track record of environmental degradation and political manipulation.

Through determined political leadership and a broad spectrum of social action we can encourage investment in renewable energy and begin the process of weaning ourselves off oil. Renewable energy can create green jobs, grow a sustainable economy, reduce our reliance on foreign oil and contribute to a cleaner environment.
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Monday, April 19, 2010

The Economic Calamity of Peak Oil

There are dangerous economic implications associated with the world's growing addiction to oil. As we face the reality of declining supplies, spikes in the price of oil imperil the recovery and threaten the economy.

In 2008 the price per barrel of oil went over $140, then the price plunged to less than $50 barrel by the end of the year. In the coming months, oil prices should increase due to peak oil theory and the ongoing rebound of the global economy. Many are predicting oil prices of around $100 per barrel by late May/early June, coinciding with peak summer demand.

Goldman Sachs believes that crude shortages will re-emerge as supply fails to keep up with demand recovery. Barclays and Bank of America are both predicting $100 per barrel this year.

China and India's appetite for oil continues to grow while the recovery fuels global demand. This is a recipe for unprecedented oil price increases that could cripple the global economy. Besides the inevitability of a declining supply, regional conflicts can profoundly disrupt oil supply.

Fossil fuels have a hugely detrimental environmental impact and unless we invest in renewable energy on a massive scale, peak oil panic will have dire economic consequences.
________________________________

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

Peak Oil

The world's oil supply is finite and many credible sources are counting down to the moment when demand exceeds supply.

As indicated in the CNA report "Powering America's Defense," there is a strong relationship between climate change, energy dependence, and national security. The report clearly states that continued reliance on fossil fuels creates “an unacceptably high threat level from a series of converging risks.” These threats include conflicts over fuel resources, destabilization driven by ongoing climate change, and threats to critical infrastructure. According to the report, dependence on foreign oil weakens international leverage, jeopardizes the military, and entangles the US government with hostile regimes.

In February 2010, the IISS held a workshop on climate change and energy security. Their discussion included a review of some direct threats due to climate change. Although participants were divided, some of those present put forth the idea that we could surpass ‘tipping points’ that could lead to rapid, dangerous changes.

The US Army is the biggest single user of oil in the world and according to a Joint Operating Environment report from the US Joint Forces Command, surplus oil production capacity could disappear within two years. Serious shortages are expected by 2015 with a significant economic and political impact. "By 2012, surplus oil production capacity could entirely disappear, and as early as 2015, the shortfall in output could reach nearly 10 million barrels per day," says the report.

In February 2010, Ibrahim Sami Nashawi, Adel Malallah and Mohammed Al-Bisharah from the College of Engineering and Petroleum at Kuwait University, published a study on global oil supply using a multi-cycle Hubbert model. The original Hubbert model in 1956, accurately predicted that oil production would peak in the United States around 1970.

Although widely accepted, the Hubbert model has been criticized because it does not consider factors like technological innovation, political events, social tensions and economic considerations. The Kuwait study methodology is a multi-cycle approach that incorporates elements ignored by the Hubbert model.

According to the findings of the Kuwait study, the world production is estimated to peak in 2014 at a rate of 79 million barrels/day. OPEC has a remaining reserve of 909 barrels, which is about 78% of the world reserves. OPEC production is expected to peak in 2026 at a rate of 53 million barrels/day. On the basis of 2005 world crude oil production and current recovery techniques, the world oil reserves are being depleted at an annual rate of 2.1%.

Due to its environmentally harmful effects and dwindling supply we must prepare for a world without oil. Clean energy production is not only a sensible strategy to meet shortfalls in energy demand, it is the most sustainable way to replace existing demand.
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Friday, April 16, 2010

Climate Counts: Businesses Combating Climate Change

Climate Counts is a non-profit group that was launched over three years ago to help business leaders combat the climate crisis. Despite an abundance of irresponsible enterprises, some businesses are distinguishing themselves through laudable efforts to engage the serious problem of climate change.

Climate Counts brings consumers and companies together in the fight against global climate change. The Climate Counts Company has developed a scorecard with criteria chosen for their effectiveness at solving the global climate crisis. Since 2007, Climate Counts researchers have used these criteria to rate the climate actions of nearly 150 companies, representing approximately 3,000 brands, in 16 industry sectors.

Late this winter, Climate Counts launched its Industry Innovators (i2) project. Climate Counts created i2 to help companies investing in real climate solutions deepen their market impact. The six charter companies (Amtrak, Ben & Jerry's, Clif Bar, Recreational Equipment, Shaklee, and Timberland) went through the rigorous Climate Counts i2 scoring process. Each of the six charter members earned Climate Counts' top designation.

The Climate Counts scoring ranks companies on criteria in four key areas: Measurement of climate impact; reduction of climate impact; support for public policy that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and external transparency and clarity on climate actions - to spur greater corporate climate responsibility.

Companies interested in getting a Climate Counts company benchmark can use the i2 site go through a process of self-evaluation and follow it by requesting Climate Counts' own review of the company to determine a final, public score.

The i2 program applies to companies whether they are beginning the process of going green or more deeply involved in the process of developing sustainable practices. Companies looking into a more sustainable approach can use the i2 scoring process to get a roadmap for the work ahead, while others may want a score on their marketing communications efforts for consumers and stakeholders.

One of the charter members is Amtrak and they have adopted a mission that is ”Safer, Greener, Healthier." They have agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from diesel locomotives by 6 percent from 2003 to 2010.

"We believe business has a responsibility -- not only to be a part of meaningful climate solutions, but also to communicate their efforts transparently to stakeholders. We're honored to be among the charter companies for Climate Counts' Industry Innovators project because we believe it seeks to establish corporate environmental accountability which leads, importantly, to climate action." said Roy Deitchman, Vice President of EHS, Amtrak.

"The Climate Counts scorecard provides a continuous improvement process and is a useful tool in identifying next steps on the climate action continuum. While we have tracked our climate impacts since 2000, making our emissions data and reductions efforts transparent will continue to help us improve our own performance while also serving to raise awareness about and grow markets for innovative solutions to climate change." said Jil Zilligen, Chief Sustainability Officer, Shaklee Corporation.

REI is pursuing business-based solutions where financial performance and social/environmental benefits are mutually reinforcing. "We find that when we look at environmental metrics, we identify new opportunities and risks. In many ways we're just getting started, but we've already seen real business benefits. Pursuing our aspiration of being climate neutral is helping us deliver on the expectation of both financial and environmental performance for our co-op members," said Kevin Hagen, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, REI.

"True climate solutions that can also boost the economy and our jobs outlook demand innovation and action from businesses, and our charter companies have shown they are committed to making climate action a competitive advantage," said Climate Counts Executive Director Wood Turner.

The charter members of the i2 project are boldly showing leadership with sustainable positioning that betters their bottom line.
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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Koch Industries Financing Climate Denial

Koch industries is behind a web of financing that supports conservative special interest groups focused on fighting environmental regulation, opposing clean energy legislation, and easing limits on industrial pollution. According to a Greenpeace report, this money is typically funneled through one of three "charitable" foundations the Kochs have set up (the Claude R. Lambe Foundation, the Charles G. Koch Foundation and the David H. Koch Foundation).

The Greenpeace report also features several case studies on how the Kochs’ anti-climate propaganda is disseminated and echoed throughout its vast network of front groups.

Koch industries has played a role in misinforming the public on several environmental fronts including keeping the "ClimateGate" fallacy alive.

Many of the supposed experts speaking against global warming are on the Koch payroll. From 1997 to 2008, the Kochs funneled more than $48.5 million to organizations who are working in lockstep with the Kochs' agenda while presenting themselves as experts. Some top recipients of Koch money include:

Mercatus Center: $9,247,500 received from Koch foundations 2005-2008 [Total Koch foundation grants 1997-2008: $9,874,500]

Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP): $5,176,500 received from Koch foundations 2005-2008 [No Koch foundation grants received prior to 2005]

The Heritage Foundation: $1,620,000 received from Koch foundations 2005-2008 [Total Koch foundation grants 1997-2008: $3,358,000]

Cato Institute: $1,028,400 received from Koch foundations 2005-2008 [Total Koch foundation grants 1997-2008: $5,278,400]

Download the executive summary or the whole report: Executive Summary - Koch Industries: Secretly Funding the Climate Denial Machine (PDF) or Koch Industries: Secretly Funding the Climate Denial Machine (PDF).

Greenpeace has a great interactive graphic that enables users to see how Koch Industries uses their dirty money and influence.

Muckety has an another interactive graphic that shows a detailed map of the inter-relationships between Koch Industries and the different organizations that they fund. The interactive map shows current relations and former relations as well as more detailed information about items in the map.
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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Koch Industries' Environmental Crimes

The Koch companies have a notorious environmental record. According to Greenpeace, in the last 15 years they have amassed an impressive rap sheet that includes everything from environmental violations to negligence causing death.

In 2009, the US Justice Department and the EPA announced that Koch Industries' Invista subsidiary would pay a $1.7 million penalty and spend $500 million to fix environmental violations at facilities in seven states.

In May 2001, Koch Industries paid $25 million to settle with the US Government for the company’s long-standing practice of illegally removing oil from federal and Indian lands.

In late 2000, the company was charged with covering up the illegal release of 91 tons of the known carcinogen benzene from its refinery in Corpus Christi. Koch eventually cut a deal with then-Attorney General John Ashcroft to drop all major charges in exchange for a guilty plea for falsifying documents, and a $20 million settlement.

In 2000, the EPA fined Koch Industries $30 million for its role in 300 oil spills that resulted in more than three million gallons of crude oil leaking into ponds, lakes, streams and coastal waters.
In 1999, a Koch subsidiary pleaded guilty to charges that it had negligently allowed aviation fuel to leak into waters near the Mississippi River from its refinery in Rosemount, Minnesota, and that it had illegally dumped a million gallons of high-ammonia wastewater onto the ground and into the Mississippi.

In 1996, two people where burned alive in their vehicle due to a poorly maintained Koch pipeline that had leaked flammable butane into a residential Texas neighborhood.

Koch's crimes are not limited to spills of oil, ammonia, aviation fuel, benzene, and butane. A recently released Greenpeace expose uncovered Koch industries' connections with climate denial front groups.
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Next: Koch Industries Financing Climate Denial

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Monday, April 12, 2010

Koch Industries Destroys the Environment and Funds Climate Denial

Koch Industries is the second largest privately held company in America and as revealed by Greenpeace they are guilty of crimes against the environment as well as being a leading supporter of climate denial groups.

Koch industries has a dismal environmental record and to add insult to injury, they are pouring almost $50 million dollars per year into climate denial misinformation.

Koch Industries is a conglomerate of more than twenty companies with $100 billion in annual sales, operations in nearly 60 countries, and 70,000 employees. Their diversified holdings are a virtual top ten list of the most environmentally destructive sectors of the economy, they include petroleum refining, fuel pipelines, coal supply and trading, oil and gas exploration, chemicals and polymers, fertilizer production, ranching and forestry products and cattle.

In addition, Koch Industries has held multiple leases on Alberta's polluting tar sands as well as pipelines that carry tar sands crude from Canada into Minnesota and Wisconsin where Koch's Flint Hill Resources owns oil refineries.

Koch Industries work to delay policies and regulation aimed at stopping global warming. As revealed by Greenpeace's successful campaign against Trader Joe's, the public will no longer countenance environmentally insensitive businesses. Koch Industries' ownership of Lycra and Stainmaster carpets are just two of their holdings that are vulnerable to social action.
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