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How the Koch Brothers Fund the Climate Change Denial Machine

How the Koch Brothers Fund the Climate Change Denial Machine

Charles and David Koch, known far and wide as the Koch brothers, are major funders of climate change denial campaigns. Owners of Koch Industries, Inc., the brothers have a combined net worth of $44 billion. As a recent report by the Center for American Progress (CAP) puts it, “The Koch brothers make their money from an oil-and-gas conglomerate that emits pollutants that contribute to climate change. It should not be surprising, then, that the Koch brothers are also major contributors to organizations denying the effects of climate change.”

The CAP report cites a Greenpeace report which states that Koch Industries is “now playing a quiet but dominant role in a high-profile national policy debate on global warming.” Koch Industries, through its foundations, gave $24.9 to “organizations of the climate denial machine.” Koch Industries also fought the climate change bill, the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009.

The Koch brothers inherited Koch Industries, Inc. from their father, Fred. C. Koch who started the company. The brothers also inherited their conservative politics from their father. Fred Koch was an original member of the John Birch Society.

The Koch brothers have long been involved in conservatism. In 1977, Charles co-founded the Cato Institute, and David Koch was the 1980 vice presidential candidate for the Libertarian Party. In 1984, David created Citizens for a Sound Economy, and in 2004 the group split into FreedomWorks and Americans for Prosperity Foundations. “The Kochs remain active with Americans for Prosperity Foundation,” according to a recent report by the Center for American Progress.

The Koch brothers have given at least $85.9 million to over 85 different conservative organizations over the last decade and a half. They also make contributions to candidates, and organize conferences “to review strategies for combating the multitude of public policies that threaten to destroy America as we know it,” as Charles Koch wrote in a letter.

The guests of a conference last year included:

  • Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas
  • Govs. Haley Barbour (R-MS) and Bobby Jindal (R-LA)
  • Sens. Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Tom Coburn (R-OK)
  • Reps. Mike Pence (R-IN) and Paul Ryan (R-WI)
  • Media figures Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck
  • Major Republican donor Fred Malek, a founder of the American Action Network
  • Oil industry executives from Aspect Energy, LLC; Murfin Drilling Co., Inc.;
  • Anschutz Company; GeoPark Holdings Ltd. and members of Koch’s subsidiaries

Why environmentalists should read the CAP report on Koch Industries

The CAP report on Koch Industries details how the company, through the vast wealth of the Koch brothers, funds the pet causes of right-wing think tanks, including climate change denial. The only way to fight against organized money is through organized people, and in order to effectively organize, concerned people need to be informed people. The report is definitely informative. It is simply a must read for anyone concerned about the environment.

DeSmogBlog points out that “David and Charles Koch have emerged as the greatest immediate risk to American democracy,” and adds that the “report shows how.”

 “As this report will demonstrate, the Koch brothers’ network works hard to advance a right-wing ideological agenda that helps their businesses reap more profits at the expense of our environment, our economy, and the American middle class,” states Tony Carrk, Policy Director of the CAP Action War Room in a blog post. “Understanding how they operate is the first step in countering their efforts to reshape our nation’s laws to benefit the wealthy even more than they do today.”

Get a copy of the CAP report!


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1:09AM PDT on May 31, 2011

Want to see a few of the things Goerge Soros is involved in? Check this out. I know some of Mr Sosos' involvements fall within the Democrat agenda, but there's an awful lot of ANTI-American activity he's supporting that even a good Democrat ought to be shuddering at.

12:46AM PDT on May 31, 2011

I just can't believe it. Yet another tyraid about the Koch Brothers by the lunatic left. I find it funny that the far left makes such a stink about the Koch Brothers, when their involvement in funding politics and other matters that effect our country negatively is chump change when compared to the person who is the single biggest threat to America, and is the far lefts (Dems) single biggest political contributor. The amount of money George Soros has spent to tear down America far outpaces what the Koch Brothers have done. But then, ... I guess since Georgie boy is Obama's largest campaign donator, the left chooses to overlook his attempts to tear our country apart.

12:35PM PDT on May 18, 2011

The Unions are a corrupt under-government...They've got to go. (Evil and stupidity always wind up destroying themselves, but sometimes it just takes too long?) I couldn't agree more...History has shown that Socialism fails miserably and successfully applied Liberal Agendas have eaten our country like a cancer...They've got to go too...All of you...Get outta here!!!!! Move your Fairy-Tale Obama-Land to Krypton where it

6:52AM PDT on May 18, 2011

Scott M. writes:
The author of this piece is

Read her bio, can she possibly be balanced or publish anything close to the truth?? She has an AGENDA folks, She has an AGENDA....

Yes Scotty, she has an Agenda, it's called social justice. Anything wrong there?
How much do the Kochroach brothers pay you to do this? What's YOUR agenda?

6:45AM PDT on May 18, 2011

Evil and stupidity always wind up destroying themselves, but sometimes it just takes too long.

6:43AM PDT on May 18, 2011

The Kochroach brothers must be stepped on. Go to

10:27AM PDT on May 9, 2011

The Koch brothers really know how to give their money to fund evil. The amaze me at every turn. They nearly single-handedly took down the unions. They get billions back, of our tax money, from Govt funded Oil subsidies... and funnel it to their crazy right wing groups. These groups then try to take away every benefit American workers have left. They are true enemies to our world.

2:01AM PDT on Apr 24, 2011

You can't stop evil....only manage it!!
Cutt out btheir balls!

5:23PM PDT on Apr 16, 2011

Greedy humans at it again. I suppose one can never have enough money! If I had that kind of wealth, I would invest it in companies working on alternate, SAFE energy sources and ditch the oil & gas.

5:37AM PDT on Apr 16, 2011

thanks for the info

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