The hidden persuaders of the environmental elite

If you like EPA, you'll love EGA

  • Big Green follow the money CFACT Org

America’s environmental agenda is set by elite foundations that decide which activists get the money. And they form “affinity groups” to collude with President Obama’s bureaucracy, which funnels tax dollars to Democratic advocates to enforce that agenda.

Meet the conservation cEGA logo 2ash cartel of the uber-rich: the Environmental Grantmakers Association, a veteran organization (founded 1985) of more than 200 ultra-wealthy foundations caught in the spotlight of a new 92-page report exposing Big Green wealth eating away America’s industrial strength.

This is the same EGA that emerged during the Senate confirmation hearings for Rhea Sun Suh, the Interior Department’s new head of national parks and the Fish and Wildlife Service — a veteran EGA member who invited colleagues to come visit her any time.

Suh once worked for the Packard Foundation on programs to block oil and gas production in the West. Ironically, Packard’s investment portfolio — the profits from which the foundation pays its anti-oil and gas grants — holds more than $350,000 in ExxonMobil shares, and millions in dozens of other lesser-known fossil fuel securities.

Rhea Sun Suh

Rhea Sun Suh

Most of EGA’s foundation members have similar million-dollar dirty little secrets, but their tax-exempt

activist recipients are not morally conflicted by taking fossil fuel cash and keeping it a secret as long as it furthers their corrosive goals.

The convoluted ethics that Greenpeace, for example, concocts in order to show how its oil-soaked funding — when exposed — is purified by the intent of the giver are classic unintentional self-parody.

The new report is titled “The Chain of Environmental Command: How a Club of Billionaires and Their Foundations Control the Environmental Movement and Obama’s EPA,” and was produced by the Republican staff of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee under the direction of Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, the committee’s ranking minority member.

Its executive summary states, “an elite group of left-wing millionaires and billionaires, which this report refers to as the ‘Billionaire’s Club,’ directs and controls the far-left environmental movement, which in turn controls major policy decisions and lobbies on behalf of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.”

Senate report chain of environmental command cover

Click to read the Senate report

Having researched over $80 billion in green grants during the past few decades, I was impressed by the scope and detail of the oversight team’s work, and asked Vitter how he felt about it.

“This report really gets to the core of tracking the money and exposing the collusion,” Vitter told me. “The complicated, layered system is intended to create a lack of transparency. There is an unbelievable amount of money behind the environmental movement and far too much collusion between far-left environmental groups and the Obama EPA.”

The collusion is like something out of a bad spy movie. Vitter’s oversight team uncovered a June 2009 deal in which the Rockefeller Family Fund offered then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson to pay for a plant inside the President’s Council on Environmental Quality to “stake the EPA’s claim there,” and then slip the shill into a pre-arranged EPA job, giving the agency a White House insider on staff — and, not coincidentally, tightening the Rockefeller power grip over the EPA.

Jackson wrote her chief of staff Diane Thompson, “I think it’s a fine idea and can only help EPA in the long run” — using her fake Richard Windsor email account – and Thompson replied, “My thoughts exactly. The more inside connections the better.”

Shalini Vajjhala

Shalini Vajjhala

The Rockefeller shill was Shalini Vajjhala, who agreed to leave her minor position at Resources for the Future, a Washington think tank, for a two-month stint at the CEQ (with the pretentious title of “deputy associate director for energy and climate”). Then the EPA slipped her in as deputy assistant administrator of the Office of International & Tribal Affairs. Vajjhala remained until her 2011 appointment as EPA’s special representative leading a presidential U.S.-Brazil initiative.

After Vajjhala cycled through the White House and EPA, she got her personal reward in 2012: approval to found and manage a new investment portfolio supported by the Rockefeller Foundation (the original 1913 John D. Rockefeller philanthropy, not the fourth generation’s Family Fund — there are many Rockefeller tentacles). Vajjhala now contributes to the Huffington Post, funded in part by the Park Foundation.

EGA foundations are metastasizing into hundreds of far-left funds. The report drills into the Sea Change Foundation, “a private California foundation, which relies on funding from undisclosed donors and funnels tens of millions of dollars to other foundations and prominent environmental activists who strive to control both policy and politics.”

There is an incredible seedbed of Sea Change front groups: Bill Gates’ foundation gave Sea Change Capital Sea Change Foundation LogoPartners $2.5 million; eBay’s Omidyar Network Fund gave the same partners $2 million; David Rockefeller’s personal foundation gave to the Center for Sea Change. Walmart’s foundation gave $500,000 to Strategies for the Global Foundation Sea Change, an international tentacle into the White House.

But it’s not just the environment. The Crime Prevention Research Center, a nonprofit that tracks gun control activists, reported, “On January 8th, 2013, the Obama Administration met with 23 large foundations to organize a push for national gun control. They included such organizations as the Open Society Institute, the McCormick Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation” and the MacArthur Foundation.

Foundations appear to be colluding with almost every department of the Obama administration. And it’s not just the Big Green donors. It’s time for Congress to hear testimony from a sampling of manipulative foundation program directors and investment managers explaining themselves to those whose lives they influence.

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This article originally appeared in the Washington Examiner

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About the Author: Ron Arnold

Ron Arnold

Ron is a free enterprise activist, author, and newspaper columnist. He pioneered methods to expose the money and power of Big Green in nine books and hundreds of magazine and newspaper articles. He mentors promising activists and writers as a civic duty.

  • roberta4343

    it just goes to show that those who have wealth will do all they can to keep others from having it too, using any excuse that people will buy, is some private individual or company competing with your oil company or is drilling for more oil going to drive the stock prices of your oil and gas stocks down? well just use some excuse to get the area hoarded off under a false pretense. does some family have a stash of oil gas minerals or valuable lumber? isi ti going to drive your stocks down or do you want it without paying for it? then have the area declared a natural area or park or whatever and later on you can pay the government a small leasing fee to drill for the oil or gas or minerals when you need it. you see humans by nature are selfish (why do you think children have to be taught to think of others and to share? no one has to be taught to be selfish) so when selfish people get into power they naturally want it for themselves don’t want to share the wealth freedom and power it gives them with ther neighbors and they surly don’t want ot pay their workers a fair enough wage so they can start to build wealth by investing, or starting businesses or whatever. greedy selfish humans are the bane of this world depriving those who have culitivated love for God, the earth, their neighbors and for true justice of fulfilling their hopes and dreams of a peaceful prosperous beautiful earth for all crittors of this planet where all can enjoy the maximum amount of leisure without having to worry about losing their jobs or wealth to creepy people who have no concept or desire to understand what true justice really is.

  • ninetyninepct

    This just my opinion and perception, but I can see from this article that obama and the EPA seem to exhibit all the attributes of a prostitute, selling themselves for money. They have a price. We regular working stiffs get to pay plus we get screwed by them at the same time. They get the money, we get reamed. It wouldn’t do them much good if those rights and freedoms activists, Mr. Winchester, Mr. Remington and Mr. Colt became more closely involved. It is quickly getting to the point where the 99% are going to say enpugh is enough.

    • psychicbloodbrother

      Trading truth for Power, Influence & Money. This is the modus operandi of tyrants. We must expose this greed, graft and corruption to the light of day.

  • Jim Wiegand

    Speaking of “Green” collusion, since 1997 approximately 28,600 eagle carcasses have been sent to the National Eagle Repository. Hidden from the public is the fact that wind farms are their primary supplier. The Interior Department has all of this data.

    Everyone should read about the thousands of eagles being killed by turbines and
    the blistering comments made by former FWS agents disgusted by this runaway
    industry. It is all in a recently published three part series on Master
    Resource ………..”The voice of dead eagles”.

    Besides the extinction of species coming from wind turbines here is another
    nightmare scenario to think about. It would take 3-4 million 2 MW turbines, running at 25% capacity, just to replace the fossil fuel used by vehicles today in America. But by the time they were built it would take another 500,000-1,000,000of these turbines to make up for an increasing population. But these figures still do not take into consideration house hold energy use, manufacturing and other energy sectors.

    In the US we currently have the installed equivalent of 31,000 of these turbines. There is not enough room for millions of these turbines or their several hundred
    thousand of miles transmission lines with towers.

    The sickest part of all of this is that this Administration and the turbine peddlers know all of this.