The Skywriter

Weekly roundup 2/11/11: (Dirty Energy)Love is in the air (VIDEO)


Weekly roundup 2/11/11: (Dirty Energy)Love is in the air (VIDEO)


We had an action packed week. The Koch brothers are buying dirty policy; the gust of support for wind power is sweeping the nation; 1.5 million green jobs are headed our way and you still have time to visit Greenpeace's matchmaking site before Valentine's Day.

Polluter Harmony

Valentine's Day is just around the corner. If you still haven't been asked to the dance, it's time to visit Greenpeace's Polluter Harmony website - the No. 1 matchmaking site for polluters, industry lobbyists, and the politicians that love them. Okay, so maybe we wouldn't want cupid to aim his arrow at Smokin' Salmon Murkowski for us, but this is a great site to see which Dirty Energy lobbyists are getting cozy with which politicians like Representative Fred Upton, House Speaker John Boehner, and Senator Lisa Murkowski. They're even running a contest: Submit your favorite examples of polluter harmony and send an e-mail to or tweet using #polluterharmony. The cutest couple gets a special polluter harmony delivery. Who could resist? It's celebrating the best love money could buy! Take a look at their video below:

Putting the wind back in your sails

Offshore wind turbines will be making some serious waves pretty soon. The Obama administration announced plans to invest $50 million to put offshore wind farms on the fast track. The hope is to lease four Mid-Atlantic wind farms in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey by the end of the year. And they're not slowing down there; they plan on looking into putting more facilitates in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and North Carolina in the spring. USA Today reports:

The Department of Energy said it would spent up to $25 million over five years to support the development of innovative wind turbines, up to $18 million over three years to study how to optimize the wind market and up to $7.5 million over three years to fund more cost-effective turbine drive trains."

Governor Martin O'Malley is already putting into the works a head start by drafting a offshore wind bill.

1.5 million green jobs

Ceres released a report by the University of Massachusettes-Amherst explaining the Clean Air Act rules will aid in creating nearly $1.5 million jobs. The "Clean Air Transport Rule", Climate Progress reports, will reduce pollutants that contribute to acid rain and smog, while the UtilityMACT rule will require industrial boilers to cut hazardous air pollutants. Manufacturing, installing and opporatiing these pollutions controls will create a projected 290,000 new jobs each year for the next five years for Americans notably in Virginia, Illinois, Tennessee, North Carolina and Ohio. You can download the full report from Ceres here.

Tackling a Koch problem

The billionaire Koch brothers have made the dive head first into Washington's political spectrum. They've formed the largest single oil and gas donor to members of the House Energy and Commerce panel, ahead of giants like Exxon Mobil, contributing $279,500 to 22 of the panel's 31 Republicans, and $32,000 to five Democrats.

Thousands in California gathered outside the billionaire's closed door meeting to confront the Koch brothers' efforts. It's Getting Hot in Here gives us the full look at the dire circumstances.

The Supreme Court decision Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission opened the floodgates for people like Charles Koch (and other billionaires) to influence our democratic elections process through direct campaign contributions, front groups, television advertisements and more. Unfortunately, our democracy, post-Citizens United will continue to put corporate interests over people until we level the playing field."

Kate Sheppard at Mother Jones explains that the Koch brothers' empire is buying up a dangerous media presence, and even their own think tanks. All this comes at a price that's pocket change for the billionaires. Their plan for 2012? Float $88 million to conservative causes during the 2012 election cycle, POLITICO reports.

Noam Chomsky

The Nation released the sixth video in their "Peak Oil and a Changing Climate" series, this week. Below, Noam Chomsky breaks down how the Chamber of Commerce, American Petroleum Institute and countless other lobbyists are spearheading the campaigns to convince the public global warming is a liberal hoax. He takes aim at reports about meteorologist expressing their doubt in hard climate science. Just who are these meteorologists?

Meteorologists are pretty faces who read scripts telling you if it's going to rain tomorrow. What do they have to say any more than your barber? But that's presented as it's a significant contribution to discussion."

Chomsky says it's time to start paying attention to these dirty energy campaigns before it's too late. You can watch his full video below.

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