August 2, 2012
Contact: Eitan Bencuya,
Sierra Club Releases New Report Highlighting Attack
on Clean Energy
Energy Under Siege” Study Follows Money Trail Behind Campaign Against Renewable
WASHINGTON D.C. – Over the past decade,
the fossil fuel industry has mounted a coordinated campaign to discredit
renewable energy and hinder its growth, according to a new report released
today by the Sierra Club.
Energy Under Siege, reveals how the fossil fuel industry is using
tactics such as financial contributions to political campaigns, faux “think tanks,”
phony intellectuals, and astroturf groups to shift public opinion and discredit
misinformation campaign is currently evident in the struggle to renew the
Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy. The PTC helps support the more
than 75,000 jobs in the wind industry, but if the tax credit is not renewed
before the end of this year, as many as half those jobs could be lost.
"From California to Pennsylvania, clean energy jobs are under attack by fossil fuel interest groups – yet many in Congress are sitting on their hands while tens of thousands of American jobs hang in the balance," said Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club. "It seems these members of Congress prefer serving the interests of the big polluters that bankrolled their campaigns over the interests of working families. That needs to end now. Congress must stand up for the tens of thousands of Americans whose jobs are on the line and renew the Production Tax Credit."
Sierra Club’s report follows the trail of money from big polluters to politicians
and non-profit front groups. For example, the oil and gas industry spent more
than $146 million on lobbying alone in 2011, while Big Oil tycoons David and
Charles Koch gave at least $85 million to 85 right-wing “think tanks” and
advocacy groups over the past decade and a half. Meanwhile, organizations like
the Manhattan Institute and the Heartland Institute that defend oil subsidies
while attacking renewable energy have received upwards of $600,000 each since
1998 from the oil company Exxon.
Wind power is a clean,
competitive energy source that has seen strong momentum over the past few
years. Already, states like Iowa and South Dakota generate 20 percent of
their electricity from wind power, and the wind industry is on track to produce
20 percent of America’s electricity by 2030. More than 400 American
manufacturing plants build wind components, keeping jobs close to home.
To read the report Clean Energy Under Siege visit