The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
An Open Letter to Charles Koch: Join Us in the Push Toward a Clean Energy Economy
Dear Mr. Koch,
Recently, at a Wall Street Journal forum, I heard from your company’s environmental, health and safety director, Sheryl Corrigan, that you believe that “the climate is changing,” and that “humans have a part in that.”
I wanted to write to welcome you into the not-very-exclusive club that includes the strong majority of Americans, 99+ percent of scientists, nearly all Democratic candidates and a growing number of conservative Republicans, who all believe the same thing. We’re happy to have you!
Sheryl also said, “the real question is … what are we going to do about it?”
I have a few suggestions.
First, make sure that everyone knows where you stand on this important issue. Your voice is an important one, and I hope you’ll speak up if your opinion has truly changed.
Second, a transition is underway across the world away from an energy system powered by expensive and unsustainable fossil fuels and toward one powered fully by abundant, increasingly inexpensive, clean, renewable energy. Clean energy is becoming more affordable and more accessible each day, with the cost of solar panels dropping by 80 percent in the past eight years and wind power expected to double in the next five years. As you know, this is in spite of your own advocacy: You have funded organizations like Americans for Prosperity that have targeted clean energy investments while fighting to preserve tax credits for big oil.
An overwhelming majority of Americans and business leaders support policies that incentivize investment in and development of clean energy. Now that your position on climate change may be shifting, we hope that you’ll join the push toward the clean energy economy and invest in the clean energy sources that increasingly are powering America and the world.
Third, put your money where reality is. You and your brother have spent hundreds of millions backing organizations and political candidates who either deny climate science or oppose nearly every policy that would advance climate solutions. If you want to advance prosperity in a climate-safe world, then please get out of the way and stop funding candidates, lobbying efforts and organizations that deny climate change is happening or that aim to undermine efforts to address the climate crisis. Specifically, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has been driving efforts in states across the country to undermine plans to address the climate crisis, including opposing the Clean Power Plan. It’s time to make sure ALEC’s platform is in accord with the reality that you may now recognize — or to stop funding its damaging agenda.
While we may not agree on each solution for addressing the climate crisis, I hope we do agree that solutions are needed. Now, let’s get to work to make sure that candidates up and down the ticket from both political parties stop denying there’s a problem and get to work solving it.
The world recognizes that the threat of climate change is real and is determined to do something about it. We hope that you’ll join us.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Pedro Biondi
Extinct in its habitat for at least three decades, the Alagoas curassow (Pauxi mitu) is now back in the jungle and facing a test of survival, thanks to the joint efforts of more than a dozen institutions to pull this pheasant-like bird back from the brink.
By Julia Conley
Sen. Elizabeth Warren expanded her vision for combating the climate crisis on Tuesday with the release of her Blue New Deal — a new component of the Green New Deal focusing on protecting and restoring the world's oceans after decades of pollution and industry-caused warming.
A judge in New York's Supreme Court sided with Exxon in a case that accused the fossil fuel giant of lying to investors about the true cost of the climate crisis. The judge did not absolve Exxon from its contribution to the climate crisis, but insisted that New York State failed to prove that the company intentionally defrauded investors, as NPR reported.
By Sharon Elber
You may have heard that giving a pet for Christmas is just a bad idea. Although many people believe this myth, according to the ASPCA, 86 percent of adopted pets given as gifts stay in their new homes. These success rates are actually slightly higher than average adoption/rehoming rates. So, if done well, giving an adopted pet as a Christmas gift can work out.