Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Court Documents Show Peabody Energy Funded Dozens of Climate Denial Groups

Climate
Court Documents Show Peabody Energy Funded Dozens of Climate Denial Groups

It's no secret that the fossil fuel industry funds climate denial organizations and pseduo-scientists. Regardless, it's always nice to have proof that deniers are hired guns.

The latest batch of evidence comes from Peabody Energy, the biggest coal company in the U.S. It's gone bankrupt and the related court documents list those to whom they still owe money. Try to contain your surprise: many of the usual suspects in the deniersphere show up. Unfortunately, the amounts owed and dates aren't listed, so we don't know how much money was supposed to change hands or when. But we do know there is a funding relationship between the coal giant and the climate deniers.

There are individual scientists listed, ones we know and love, like Willie Soon, the denier who accused legitimate scientists of “prostituting science" when he's the one that's received more than a million dollars for his work finding potential non-fossil-fuel excuses for climate change. There's also Richard Lindzen, who was part of Peabody's failed social cost of carbon lawsuit (which is probably what the company owed him money for).

Roy Spencer, keeper of the UAH Satellite record is listed, probably also for his involvement in the Minnesota case (something already revealed by Greenpeace) but perhaps more. And no list of deniers-for-hire would be complete without James Taylor of Heartland, who in the past has admitted that 40 percent of his funding comes from the fossil fuel industry.

While that's the only mention of Heartland (meaning Peabody didn't fund the group directly or if it did it's already paid up) a number of other organizations have outstanding debts from Peabody. Among them are CFACT, home of Marc Morano of climatedepot. There's the “CO2 is good" group Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, FOIA-harassment legal group Energy & Environment Legal Institute (formerly the American Tradition Institute, before they got embroiled in a campaign finance scandal) and a raft of anti-renewable legislation groups, like ALEC, the 60 Plus Association, Edison Electric Institute, George C. Marshall Institute and others.

Instead of heeding literally decades of warnings that coal use would need to end to stave off climatic catastrophe and attempting to transition into the profitable renewable business, Peabody funded groups to tell the public what it wanted to hear: that climate change is no big deal or even good for us, so we can keep burning coal forever.

Ignoring science for sycophants? No wonder they went bankrupt.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Uncovered Documents Reveal MSNBC Show Worked to Promote Fracking

Noam Chomsky: The Doomsday Clock Is Nearing Midnight

New Website Helps Connect the Dots Between Extreme Weather Events and Climate Change

The Climate Costs of Offshore Oil Drilling

A dugong, also called a sea cow, swims with golden pilot jacks near Marsa Alam, Egypt, Red Sea. Alexis Rosenfeld / Getty Images

In 2010, world leaders agreed to 20 targets to protect Earth's biodiversity over the next decade. By 2020, none of them had been met. Now, the question is whether the world can do any better once new targets are set during the meeting of the UN Convention on Biodiversity in Kunming, China later this year.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

President Joe Biden signs executive orders in the State Dining Room at the White House on Jan. 22, 2021 in Washington, DC. Jabin Botsford / The Washington Post via Getty Images

By Andrew Rosenberg

The first 24 hours of the administration of President Joe Biden were filled not only with ceremony, but also with real action. Executive orders and other directives were quickly signed. More actions have followed. All consequential. Many provide a basis for not just undoing actions of the previous administration, but also making real advances in public policy to protect public health, safety, and the environment.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Melting ice forms a lake on free-floating ice jammed into the Ilulissat Icefjord during unseasonably warm weather on July 30, 2019 near Ilulissat, Greenland. Sean Gallup / Getty Images

A first-of-its-kind study has examined the satellite record to see how the climate crisis is impacting all of the planet's ice.

Read More Show Less
Probiotic rich foods. bit245 / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Ana Maldonado-Contreras

Takeaways

  • Your gut is home to trillions of bacteria that are vital for keeping you healthy.
  • Some of these microbes help to regulate the immune system.
  • New research, which has not yet been peer-reviewed, shows the presence of certain bacteria in the gut may reveal which people are more vulnerable to a more severe case of COVID-19.

You may not know it, but you have an army of microbes living inside of you that are essential for fighting off threats, including the virus that causes COVID-19.

Read More Show Less
Michael Mann photo inset by Joshua Yospyn.

By Jeff Masters, Ph.D.

The New Climate War: the fight to take back our planet is the latest must-read book by leading climate change scientist and communicator Michael Mann of Penn State University.

Read More Show Less