fracking

Fri, 2014-11-21 13:00Justin Mikulka
Justin Mikulka's picture

New York Activists Turn to Civil Disobedience As Last Resort to Fight Regulatory Capture

Award-winning author and anti-fracking activist Dr. Sandra Steingraber is going to spend Thanksgiving in jail. And it won’t be her first stay there. She spent last Earth Day there as well. She is returning to jail in upstate New York after her arrest for being part of a human blockade at the gates of the Crestwood Midstream gas storage facility on the shores of Seneca Lake in New York.

And despite the upcoming holiday about giving thanks, Steingraber has a message for anyone who wants to thank her for her efforts to protect the waters of Seneca Lake, a source of drinking water for 100,000 people - “Don’t thank me, join me.”

Over the last four weeks, she has found plenty of people to join her. Activists working under the name We Are Seneca Lake have repeatedly blocked the gates of the Crestwood facility. Initially sentenced to jail along with Steingraber this week were fellow blockade members U.S.A.F. veteran Colleen Boland (retired) and 86 year old Roland Micklem.

Over the four weeks of the We Are Seneca Lake protests, there have been 52 arrests. The protests began after a decision by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to allow the abandoned salt caverns on the shores of Seneca Lake to be used for gas storage.  As there currently is little recourse left for anyone opposing a FERC decision, We Are Seneca Lake has resorted to civil disobedience.

Steingraber explained at a press conference this week:

Wed, 2014-11-19 21:05Steve Horn
Steve Horn's picture

Introducing "Natural Gas Exports: Washington's Revolving Door Fuels Climate Threat"

DeSmogBlog's Steve Horn and Republic Report's Lee Fang have co-written an in-depth report on the influence the government-industry revolving door has had on Big Oil's ability to obtain four liquefied natural gas (LNG) export permits since 2012 from the Obama Administration.

Titled “Natural Gas Exports: Washington's Revolving Door Fuels Climate Threat,” the report published here on DeSmogBlog and on Republic Report serves as the launching pad of an ongoing investigation. It will act as the prelude of an extensive series of articles by both websites uncovering the LNG exports influence peddling machine. 

The report not only exposes the lobbying apparatus that has successfully opened the door for LNG exports, but also the PR professionals paid to sell them to the U.S. public. It also exposes those who have gone through the “reverse revolving door,” moving from industry back to government and sometimes back again.

It reveals that many former Obama Administration officials now work as lobbyists or PR professionals on behalf of the LNG exports industry, as do many former Bush Administration officials. So too do those with ties to potential 2016 Democratic Party presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton. 

They include:

Natural Gas Exports: Executive Summary

Co-authored by Lee Fang and Steve Horn.

Executive Summary

The 2014 U.S. congressional mid-term elections are now complete, and the Republican Party controls both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Some have forecasted that this could have catastrophic impacts for progress on climate change and environmental protection in general.

Natural Gas Exports: Key Findings

Key Findings 

The Obama Administration and Key Democratic Leaders Increasingly Embrace LNG Interests: While the Obama White House and Democratic Party have presented themselves as leaders in addressing climate change, moving away from fossil fuels and toward alternative energy sources, LNG exporters have bought their way into the Democratic Party, securing a close relationship with the White House, key federal agencies, and Democratic Party leaders.

Natural Gas Exports: Democrats and the Obama Administration

Democrats and the Obama Administration

President Obama came into office pledging to tackle climate change and to “close the revolving door” between lobbyists and government. But as the LNG debate has unfolded, the administration has broken both promises.

Natural Gas Exports: Our Energy Moment

Message as Massage: “Our Energy Moment”

The rush to hire Democrats for LNG export promotion has raised the specter of conflicts of interest for the White House and its allies.

Natural Gas Exports: Bush Administration Aides and LNG

Bush Administration Aides and LNG

Many ex-Bush Administration officials have passed through the government-industry revolving door and now lobby for or directly own key LNG industry assets.

Natural Gas Exports: Congress

 Congress 

When lawmakers convened for the annual Congressional Baseball Game for Charity in July 2014, they were greeted with packets reminding them of the event’s sponsors: Cheniere, the LNG firm that was the first to win an export license from the federal government, and ANGA, the lobbying association pushing for more exports.

Natural Gas Exports: Koch Brothers and the Conservative Echo Chamber

Koch Brothers and the Conservative Echo Chamber

The “Kochtopus” tentacles reach into the LNG exports debate as well.

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