Environmental groups have declared that McCotter is a “Caveman Congressman.” The satirical Caveman Energy Caucus website notes that lawmakers like McCotter have “chosen OLD energy when they voted no” on Waxman-Markey clean energy legislation. Ironically, as he explained his backwards denial of settled climate change science, McCotter cited the experience of his cavemen namesake to note that the melting of glaciers had a positive effect:
MCCOTTER: Remember, the people who talk about the melting of the glaciers and others, imagine if you were in a peninsula around 1,000 BC or so or earlier and your name was Tor and you’re out huntin’ mastodon. And you didn’t notice that the glaciers were melting and leaving the devastating flooding in its wake that became the Great Lakes in the state of Michigan.
Strong national legislation will curb climate change, strengthen our economy, create jobs and make our country more secure. Opponents of energy and climate legislation are spreading misinformation using front groups for the coal industry and even the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Companies that support strong climate legislation are objecting to its obstructionist tactics and resigning from the U.S. Chamber in droves. They know that strong climate and energy legislation will generate jobs and make the U.S. a world leader in green technologies.
(The Hill) – Working on behalf of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), the firm Bonner & Associates has acknowledged that it sent about a dozen forged letters to three House Democrats who were seen as critical swing votes.
The head of the ACCCE also acknowledged learning of some of the forgeries the day before the vote, a discovery he said “appalled” him. But neither the firm nor the coal group informed the members or the misrepresented companies about the forged letters ahead of the vote.
Steve Miller, ACCCE’s president and CEO, said he assumed Bonner & Associates would inform the members of the phony correspondence but regretted his group did not do more on its own to inform them of the forgeries.
The letters included the letterhead and signatures of members of local chapters of the NAACP, the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and groups representing Hispanics, veterans and senior citizens.
Freshman Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Va.) received a letter from a Charlottesville AAUW chapter that had been closed and was signed by an AAUW official who is dead.
Jack Bonner, the president of Bonner & Associates, told the House Select Committee on Global Warming and Energy Independence that around June 22 the firm had discovered that a temporary employee had sent letters to Congress falsely representing local chapters of the NAACP, AAUW and other groups. The firm fired the temporary employee, whose name hasn’t been released.
(BBC News) – Opinion is divided in West Virginia’s coal belt over a controversial mining technique. For years, a battle has been raging in the Appalachian Mountains over a coal-mining practice known as “mountaintop removal mining “.
In the last three decades this kind of mining has flattened some 2,500 square miles, and buried more than 1,200 miles of mountain streams.
With a new administration in Washington, the battle over mountaintop removal mining is heating up, most notably in southern West Virginia – and grassroots activists are at the forefront.
2001 – Valmore Locarno Rodriguez and Victor Hugo Orcasita were riding in the company bus, returning home from their jobs at the Loma coal mine in northern Colombia. As the bus neared the town of Valledupar, 30 miles from the mine, it was stopped by 15 gunmen, some in military uniform, who began checking the workers’ identification. When they came to Locarno and Orcasita, the two were pulled off the bus.
Locarno was hit in the head with a rifle butt. One of the gunmen then shot him in the face, as his fellow workers watched in horror from the bus. Orcasita was taken into the woods by the side of the road, where he was tortured. Later, when his body was found, his fingernails had been torn off. Locarno and Orcasita were singled out for a very simple reason: They were the leaders of a union local at the coal mine.
In Colombia, U.S. energy, military and trade policy are becoming intertwined, with devastating consequences, especially for that country’s labor movement. The Bush administration justifies its multibillion-dollar military aid to Colombia — the third-largest recipient of U.S. military aid in the world — as necessary to suppress cocaine production. But much of that money supports activities by right-wing paramilitary groups, who in turn target trade-union leaders, according to documentation assembled by organizations including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.
Bush-administration energy policies, which are now before the Senate, encourage the use of coal in U.S. power plants, and millions of tons are now being mined in the midst of Colombia’s civil war by U.S. corporations. In fact, Colombia is one of the main sources for coal burned in many U.S. power plants.
The Loma mine, where the slain union leaders worked, is owned by a U.S. multinational corporation, Drummond Co. Inc., based in Birmingham, Alabama. Drummond opened the Loma mine in 1994, and it is now Colombia’s second largest. Drummond clearly sees an interest in supporting a Bush-administration policy that encourages the increased use of coal in electrical generation.