Oil and Gas Lobbying on Capitol Hill up a Whopping 57% in 2008

Spending by oil and gas companies lobbying politicians on Capitol Hill jumped a whopping 57% between 2007 and 2008.

The oil and gas sector paid out a total of $128.6 million in 2008, compared to only $82 million in 2007. According to research we compiled using OpenSecrets.org’s database, this is an unprecedented rise in US lobbyist expenditures by the oil and gas sector.

In terms of lobbyist expenditures, the top 5 companies accounted for $72.6 million of this spending in 2008. In the year previous the top 5 spent only $38.76 million - a 53% increase in spending in a single year.

Here’s a breakdown of the lobbying expenditures by top 5 oil and gas companies:

1. ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) - spent $29 million in 2008, up from $16.9 milion in 2007.


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DeSmogBlog's Alltop Global Warming Account

If you haven’t checked out Alltop.com, it’s worth taking a look. We’ve started an Alltop Global Warming category and are starting to build out a list of our favorite online sources for climate change news and science.

Would be great to hear suggestions on sites to add to our global warming feed. Just note that we can only add sites that Alltop has already included.

Vancouver Province Jon Ferry's Wonderful World of the Illogical

Is Vancouver Province columist Jon Ferry trying out for the Best Canadian impression of George Will?

In his column today Ferry takes a university campus newspaper article on violins and makes a fantastical leap in logic to his conclusion that “the jury’s still out on climate change.” I don’t know about the violin-side of Ferry’s argument, but it seems to me to be a convenient strawman for Ferry to knock down in his ongoing campiagn to prop up global warming junk science.

This is afterall the same guy who thought Martin Durkin’s “Global Warming Swindle” should be played to high school children.

instead of fiddling at the edges looking for little crumbs to feed an illogical conclusion, my humble advice to Ferry would be to take a poke around the websites of a few of the top scientific organizations in the world and see whether they think the jury’s still out on climate change.

Here’s a few to start off:

NASA’s Global Climate Change

The Royal Society

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

Bobbing in the Big Apple?

We have heard a lot about Tuvalu disappearing under the waves. But Manhattan?

A new study published today shows that shifting ocean currents due to human-induced climate change will raise sea levels in New York by an additional 36 centimeters by the end of the century. 

That’s on top of the 15 cm due to thermal expansion of the oceans in our warming world.

Then there’s the impacts of melting ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland, which scientists last week stated could double the IPCC predictions of only two years ago – to about a meter.

Let’s not forget another study published in February showing that the northern hemisphere will be preferentially impacted by melting in Antarctica – adding another 30% of sea level rise in places like New York.

Doing the latest math, that could total more than 180 centimeters (close to six feet) of sea level rise in the Big Apple by the end of the century. This sea level thing is starting to add up.

Guess what? Many parts of Lower Manhattan are only 150 centimeters above sea level. Some of the most expensive real estate in the world could be under water in only 90 years. That ironically includes the Marriott Marquis Hotel where the notorious Heartland Institute held their climate deniers gathering last week.

Paris Hilton and the End of the World

Britney Spears is a great artist. Paris Hilton is very talented.

It seems the yawning gulf between perception and reality has never been greater.

Truer still for how the public perceives climate science. A new poll shows that 41% of Americans now believe concerns around global warming are exaggerated -the highest level of skepticism in over a decade. 

This is a shocking figure given the latest scientific findings being reveled, even as we speak, at a gathering of 2,500 of the world’s leading researchers on climate change.

This chasm of opinion between the scientific community and the public shows how criminally irresponsible many in the mainstream media have been about portraying climate science, and how effective the misinformation campaign by the fossil fuel lobby has been in deceiving the average American.

Does public opinion even matter? In a voting (and shopping) society like ours, it is about the hottest commodity going. Right or wrong, any politician goes against it at their peril.

Perhaps Mark Twain said it best: “Its name is public opinion. It is held in reverence. It settles everything. Some think it is the voice of God.”


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