Washington (Talk Media News) – Environmental advocate Americans United for Change charged Thursday that energy companies and polluters conspired to fund a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan by ingratiating several Republican Attorney’s General with nearly $3 million in campaign contributions.
The group held a press conference Thursday and detailed what they called a “Polluter Impunity,” study that shows Republican Attorney’s Generals received millions in campaign cash from the oil and coal industries.
Brad Woodhouse, who is president of Americans United for Change, said the report clearly shows that some Republican Attorney’s General are putting donor interests ahead of constituent interests.
“Republican Attorney’s General are doing the bidding of their polluter-donor friends rather than working on behalf of the people of their state,” said Woodhouse, whose organization often sides with Obama’s administration. “Our study shows that over the years polluter and energy interests have given $2.8 million to the 22 Republican AGs who are suing the Obama Administration to halt the clean power plan.” “And since January 2014, oil and gas related companies have donated more than $1.9 million to the Republican Attorney’s General Association.”
Bill Holland, state policy director for the League of Conservation Voters, joined Woodhouse and said he agrees with the former’s assertion that involved Attorney’s General placed donor wishes above constituent interests.
“Today’s report really demonstrates that too often state attorney generals are acting on behalf of polluter profits rather than the public interest,” Holland said.
Holland also touted the Clean Power Plan and briefly explained its goals.
“The Clean Power Plan is the single biggest and most ambitious action the U.S. has ever taken to tackle climate change,” Holland said. “It sets the first ever limits on dangerous carbon pollution from the nation’s existing power plants, it’s flexible, and it’s achievable.”
This is not the first time these types of allegations were made. In December 2014, The New York Times produced a definitive expose alleging the same and also alleged the contents of an EPA bound letter by Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt casting doubt as to the extent of damage wreaked by air pollution via gas companies working in the state. However, that letter may have been written by energy lobbyists, according to some media reports.
Pruitt’s office did not return calls for comment.
Thursday marks two-years since the EPA first sponsored the Clean Power Plan.