steyer4Information obtained by the Energy & Environment Legal Institute (EE Legal) through state and federal Freedom of Information Act public record requests reveal a richly funded and closely coordinated network including the White House, governors-in-hiding, and “Green energy” subsidy seekers to advance the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan.

The full report, titled “Public Interests & Public Office,” was prepared by EE Legal Senior Legal Fellow Christopher Horner, also a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, was released in August.

The report chronicles how governors anxious to receive funding from “major environmental donors” — principally billionaire Tom Steyer — yet fearful about political consequences if their intent was revealed, hid behind non-governmental in-state underwriting “orchestrators,” with an initial 6-month $1,030,000 budget to advance policies they recognized to be economically destructive to their states.

The NGO orchestrators are organized to run initiatives in parallel with Obama/Steyer political/policy operations to “align in-state advocacy capacity with each governor’s implementation and political goals.”

One of the governors who have publicly decried Obama’s rules as “disastrous,” yet whose Washington representatives privately workedbeshear3 for 2 years to advance it, is Kentucky’s Steve Beshear.

Email documents show that his was one among a core group of “states that can’t commit to the GCC [Governors Climate Compact] publicly now but would welcome quiet engagement” with others which include Arkansas, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Tennessee.

Emails obtained by EE Legal document that the coordinated multimillion-dollar campaign by governors and wealthy donors began to take shape in a December 2013 White House meeting.

It has continued with senior administration representatives boasting to governors’ aides, “We’ve got a few other tracks with private sector and unusual allies,” possibly related to tandem objectives advocacy groups dedicated to the “clean energy economy” . . . “founded and fund[ed] by the Democrat’s environmentalist mega-donor Tom Steyer.”

Other major environmental donors reportedly include former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs Henry Paulson.

Steyer’s Managing Director Ted White has described the “affiliated groups that we founded and fund (such as NextGen Climate action, or Next Generation, or AEE [Advanced Energy Economy],” which have retained Al Gore and George Soros executive Cathy Zoi “to help us make that assessment and determination,” of “which of the affiliated groups . . . will be taking the lead for us on this [or it could be a combination].”

Recognizing the “Need [for support from] Midwest and flyover states,” emails cite one tactic whereby democratic governors will “creatively engage” electric utilities under their jurisdiction rather than rely upon green groups to pressure Republicans, or utilities which cross lines with Republican states, because the “standard NGO-shaming strategy might not deliver.”

EE Legal reports that some public offices among more than two dozen governors and attorneys general presented with FOIA requests in over 15 states are shielding their records from review using a variety of tactics.

jbrownCalifornia Gov. Jerry Brown and Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway now retroactively claim that all relevant emails are “governor’s working papers.”

Others are slow-walking their responses, likely seeking to delay until after the highly worrisome 2016 elections.

After all, there should be good reason for that sobering hesitation. As Chris Horner points out, sweeping EPA regulations will potentially cost families and businesses an additional $366 billion in electricity costs over the next few years.

Yet even EPA’s policy-reliant models indicate that such mandates will have no detectable impact on climate whatsoever.

The burden of the Obama EPA’s 1,560 pages of new Clean Power Plan rules will fall heaviest upon states which depend upon coal and natural gas for most of their power.

The Manhattan Institute’s Diana Furchtgott-Roth estimates that two-thirds of the states which will take the biggest hits are predominately Republican.

For example, basing each individual state’s target upon a weighted average of 2012 fossil fuel-fired electrical generation, the final rule will permit blue California to actually boost CO2 emissions by 15% by 2030, while red Louisiana, which produced about the same amount as California in 2012, must cut theirs by 17%.

Compliance for states transferring energy dependencies to far more costly and less reliable wind and solar sources will bankrupt industries and businesses, imposing disproportionate stresses upon the poorest households.

Prices of everything manufactured, grown, eaten, or needed to keep lights on and buildings air conditioned will be adversely impacted.

As West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey states, “We believe in this final rule the EPA is trying to convert itself from an environmental regulator to a central planning authority of states’ energy economies.”

And as Horner observes, “The ultimate goal in this well-greased machine is for every cog to move in the same direction — without seeming like they’re coordinated.” America’s prosperity and future are being crushed in its gears.


NOTE:  A version of this article first appeared at:


  • Larry Bell

    CFACT Advisor Larry Bell heads the graduate program in space architecture at the University of Houston. He founded and directs the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture. He is also the author of "Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax."