The progressive think tank International Forum on Globalization (IFG) released a report today investigating how Koch Industries and its subsidiaries stand to make as much as $100 billion in profits if the Keystone XL pipeline is built. The report, Billionaires' Carbon Bomb: The Koch Keystone XL Pipeline, finds that the Kochs hold up to 2 million acres in Alberta and have spent upwards of $50 million on Congress and think tanks that heavily push for the pipeline.
The Kochs have long been one of the largest players in the tar sands region of Alberta, Canada, according to a IFG press release. The report connects the Kochs’ 50 year history and large footprint in the Canadian tar sands to the current debate about the Keystone XL pipeline.
“The Kochs have repeatedly claimed that they have no interest in the Keystone XL pipeline, this report shows that is false,” said Victor Menotti, executive director of IFG.
“We noticed Koch Funded Tea Party members and think tanks pushing for the pipeline. We dug deeper and found $100 billion in profits, $50 million sent to organizations supporting the pipeline, and perhaps 2 million acres of land. That sounds like an interest.”
Other findings in the report include:
- The Kochs will earn 1 million times more than the average worker of the pipeline.
- The Kochs alone own more than 19 billion metric tons of carbon emissions in their tar sands holdings.
- Think tanks funded by the Kochs have released nearly 1,000 pro-Keystone XL reports or statements.
- Kochs have already made billions from insider trading and stand to do that again with tar sands.
- Koch Industries has a history of violence against people and the environment.
- The Koch Brothers seek to alter the public debate and control the policy debates in Washington.
"The past two weeks of the government shutdown brought to light the irresponsible influence of Koch-funded groups," said Jane Kleeb, director of Bold Nebraska.
"Rewarding the Koch Brothers with Keystone XL, who at every turn fund campaigns to mislead Americans on everything from climate to gas prices, is like the President advocating for Sen. Cruz to be the Majority Leader. It makes no sense. Farmers and ranchers in Nebraska are depending on President Obama to see our national interest is not served with a pipeline that lines the pockets of climate deniers and foreign oil."