Climate Coalition Pressures Biden to Reject 'Corporate Shill' Ernest Moniz as Energy Chief
By Jake Johnson
Amid reports that oil industry-friendly former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz remains under consideration to return to his old post in the incoming Biden administration, a diverse coalition of environmental groups is mobilizing for an "all-out push" to keep Moniz away from the White House and demand a cabinet willing to boldly confront the corporations responsible for the climate emergency.
On Tuesday night, climate campaigners projected onto the primary Department of Energy building messages urging President-elect Joe Biden to say "yes to a sustainable future" and no to Moniz, who currently serves on the board of the polluting utility giant Southern Company.
Following the demonstration, the coalition on Wednesday morning debuted NoMoniz.org, a website that warns the policies of Obama's former energy secretary "might be good for his friends in the coal, oil, and gas industries, but they're a death sentence for us and our planet."
"It's unacceptable that Ernest Moniz is being considered for a role in the Biden administration — his policies, his financial ties to fossil fuel companies, his contempt for youth climate activists, and his overall unwillingness to do what it takes to protect our future should disqualify him immediately," reads the site, which was launched by Oil Change U.S., Greenpeace USA, Sunrise Movement, the Climate Justice Alliance, Center for Biological Diversity, Friends of the Earth U.S., and dozens of other groups.
It is absolutely imperative that @JoeBiden keep @ErnestMoniz out of his cabinet, and any of his protégée like Liz S… https://t.co/7x2WN6nxgs— Evan Weber 🌅🔥 (@Evan Weber 🌅🔥)1606310256.0
Previously an adviser to major companies such as BP and General Electric, Moniz's tenure as head of Obama's energy department as well as his public statements since leaving office make clear that he is opposed to the kind of sweeping climate action that environmentalists and scientists say is necessary to avert planetary catastrophe.
Speaking to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce last year, Moniz endorsed what he dubbed a "Green Real Deal" that would welcome a "broad coalition" of supporters — including the fossil fuel industry. In an interview months earlier, Moniz — a proponent of natural gas as a bridge to a clean energy future — denounced what he described as "often completely unrealistic proposals for the pace at which we can decarbonize."
"With his deep ties to the fossil fuel industry and promotion of false solutions like carbon capture and sequestration, Ernest Moniz is not a forward-thinking choice for the cabinet," Anthony Rogers-Wright, policy coordinator for the Climate Justice Alliance, said in a statement Wednesday. "The Department of Energy must be led by someone open to concrete ideas for a fossil-free future, not continued dominance by a corrupt, heavily-subsidized industry whose existence hinges on maintaining an antiquated all-of-the-above strategy."
Janet Redman, climate campaign director at Greenpeace USA, warned that Moniz's fossil fuel connections "spell danger for the nation's efforts to mitigate the climate crisis" as atmospheric carbon dioxide continues to rise in 2020 despite widespread coronavirus lockdowns.
"We need a true climate leader who understands that we must phase out fossil fuels, not a corporate shill with 'all of the above energy' policies who wants to prop up fracked gas and pipelines," said Redman. "The American people have given Joe Biden a mandate to take bold action in service of climate justice, public health, economic prosperity, and racial equity. Moniz would only be holding him back."
Reposted with permission from Common Dreams.
- Most Meat Will Be Plant-Based or Lab-Grown in 20 Years, Analysts ... ›
- Lab-Grown Meat Debate Overlooks Cows' Range of Use Worldwide ... ›
- Will Plant-Based Meat Become the New Fast Food? - EcoWatch ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
One city in New Zealand knows what its priorities are.
Dunedin, the second largest city on New Zealand's South Island, has closed a popular road to protect a mother sea lion and her pup, The Guardian reported.
piyaset / iStock / Getty Images Plus
- No Country Is Protecting Children's Health, Major Study Finds ... ›
- 'Every Child Born Today Will Be Profoundly Affected by Climate ... ›
By Jeff Masters, Ph.D.
Earth had its second-warmest year on record in 2020, just 0.02 degrees Celsius (0.04°F) behind the record set in 2016, and 0.98 degrees Celsius (1.76°F) above the 20th-century average, NOAA reported January 14.
Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for 2020, the second-warmest year the globe has seen since record-keeping began in 1880, according to NOAA. Record-high annual temperatures over land and ocean surfaces were measured across parts of Europe, Asia, southern North America, South America, and across parts of the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans. No land or ocean areas were record cold for the year. NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information
Figure 2. Total ocean heat content (OHC) in the top 2000 meters from 1958-2020. Cheng et al., Upper Ocean Temperatures Hit Record High in 2020, Advances in Atmospheric Sciences
Figure 3. Departure of sea surface temperature from average in the benchmark Niño 3.4 region of the eastern tropical Pacific (5°N-5°S, 170°W-120°W). Sea surface temperature were approximately one degree Celsius below average over the past month, characteristic of moderate La Niña conditions. Tropical Tidbits
- NASA and NOAA: Last Decade Was the Hottest on Record - EcoWatch ›
- Earth Just Had Its Hottest September Ever Recorded, NOAA Says ... ›
In December of 1924, the heads of all the major lightbulb manufacturers across the world met in Geneva to concoct a sinister plan. Their talks outlined limits on how long all of their lightbulbs would last. The idea is that if their bulbs failed quickly customers would have to buy more of their product. In this video, we're going to unpack this idea of purposefully creating inferior products to drive sales, a symptom of late-stage capitalism that has since been coined planned obsolescence. And as we'll see, this obsolescence can have drastic consequences on our wallets, waste streams, and even our climate.
- Consumer Society No Longer Serves Our Needs - EcoWatch ›
- Electronic Waste: New EU Rules Target Throwaway Culture ... ›