** Not Just the Usual Suspects: Power Companies and Big Oil,
but Microsoft, Google, and eBay As Well**
Makers of sneakers, blue jeans, and computer network servers joined forces late last fall and vowed a bigger push in Congress on climate change. Meanwhile, consumer-owned utilities — relatively quiet in the global warming debate compared to the big investor-owned power companies — decided they needed to weigh in once a new president took office. Food producers felt they, too, needed to watch the global warming issue more closely to protect their interests. And promoters of electric vehicles saw their long-awaited chance for a boost from Uncle Sam if their needs were addressed in a climate bill.
They’re all part of a crazy quilt of about 140 businesses and organizations that jumped into the climate change debate on Capitol Hill in the first quarter of this year. Those new players drove a 14 percent increase in the number of interests lobbying on global warming, compared to the same time last year, according to a new analysis by the Center for Public Integrity of lobbying disclosure forms filed with the U.S. Senate.
Manufacturers, power companies, and the oil and gas industry still dominate the roster of interests, accounting for more than half of the 880 total businesses and groups that reported they were seeking to influence climate change policy. Just 10 lobbying firms represent nearly 100 of these corporate players, including some of the largest trade associations and companies that have long been active in the climate debate. But as California Democrat Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and his energy subcommittee chairman, Massachusetts Democrat Edward Markey, move forward this week with a mark-up of the American Clean Energy and Security Act, their landmark legislation to curb the global warming threat through a complex cap-and-trade system, the interests seeking to be heard are more diverse than ever.
This is why cap-and-trade is so ridiculous even if, or especially if, you believe that humans are causing global warming by emitting too much carbon.
By the time this bill lands on the President’s desk and he proclaims it the dawning of a new age it will have so many exemptions, exceptions, variances, &c. as to be totally worthless for the stated purpose.