The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI — pronounced Reggie) is something I care a lot about. It was the first cap-and-trade initiative in the United States and has been
highly successful. Of course, anything that’s successful at encouraging clean energy and energy efficiency, and thus slowing catastrophic climate change, is heftily attacked by the Tea Party and it’s number one funder, Koch Industries. And RGGI is no exception.
If you’re not familiar with the Koch brothers, they are two of the richest people in the world (tied for 5th-richest in the United States) and have made most of their money off of oil and gas. They are strongly opposed to government regulations on polluters (or anything) and fund the some of the largest Tea Party and far-right-wing groups in the nation. The idea that the Tea Party is a grassroots movement is a joke — it is a Koch Industries movement geared at making the rich richer and the poor poorer.
Greenpeace exposed the Koch brothers and their anti-environmental efforts last year and, since that time, I think nearly every major media outlet has picked up on the story. But the Koch Brothers and their front groups (most notably, Americans for Prosperity) haven’t slowed in their efforts to undermine clean energy, energy efficiency, and climate action.
I wrote about the
Tea Party’s attack on RGGI (especially
in New Jersey) twice here on Change and
started a petition on this. The most recent news on this is that
Americans for Prosperity (AFP) just launched a campaign focused on getting Democratic state Senator Jim Whelan to withdraw his support for RGGI and sign on to legislation pulling the plug on it. AFP is running radio ads specifically on this. Reportedly, this push to get Whelan to oppose RGGI comes after AFP successfully got another prominent Democrat in New Jersey, Senator Paul Sarlo, to do so. In my personal opinion, this is just depressing. Attacking the country, attacking innovation, attacking future generations and livability, all so a few polluters can make a little more money.
Greenpeace recently released a report showing how
RGGI has become the #1 target of the Koch brothers and its front groups now that a federal cap-and-trade program is off the table (or on indefinite hold). The Koch brothers have money. And they are clearly going to use it. What have we got on our side that can match that? People.
Sign the petition below urging the Governor of New Jersey, the New Jersey State House, and the New Jersey State Senate to
recognize the many benefits of RGGI and support it far into the future.
losinghand via flickr