"How the 'Kochtopus' Stifled Green Debate"

It's not just that the billionaire Koch brothers have spent tens of millions to undermine science and stifle debate on climate change. It's that they do it in secret.

"Even by the standards of the super-rich, Charles and David Koch are extraordinarily wealthy. ...The two brothers share a similar political outlook. They are right-wing libertarians who believe in minimal regulation of industry, smaller government, lower corporate taxes and less generous social services. They are also closet 'sceptics' when it comes to climate science. ...

Together, the two brothers have given millions of dollars to non-profit organisations that criticise environmental legislation and support lower taxes for industry.

The Kochs have also contributed vast sums to promote scepticism towards climate change, more even than the oil industry according to some estimates. Greenpeace, for instance, has calculated that ExxonMobil spent $8.9m on climate-sceptic groups between 2005 and 2008; over the same period the Koch brothers backed such groups to the tune of nearly $25m."

Steve Connor reports for the Independent January 24, 2013.

SEE ALSO:

"Exclusive: Billionaires Secretly Fund Attacks on Climate Science" (Independent)

"Cool Job Posting: Earn $20 Pretending To Hate Wind Energy" (Grist)

"The Anonymous Billionaire Group Funding Climate Change Denial" (Blue and Green Tomorrow)

"Astroturf Gone Wrong: Fake Protesters Offered $20 To Stand At Anti-Wind Energy Rally" (Thing Progress)

"Koch-Funded Climate Change Skeptic Reverses Course" (Los Angeles Times)

Op-Ed: "Northeast Faces Stark Choice on Climate Pollution" (New York Times/Peter Shattuck and Daniel L. Sosland)

Editorial: "All Interests Must Be Declared" (Independent)

"Koch Industries: Still Fueling Climate Denial" (Greenpeace)

"Carbon King David Koch Thinks Climate Action Will 'Damage The Economy', But Sandy Underscores Inaction Is Much Costlier" (Think Progress)

Source: Independent, 01/25/2013