Hubbel Relat

Hubbel Relat

Credentials

  • J.D., George Mason School of Law (2008). [1]
  • B.A., Political Science and Government, UC Santa Barbara (2003).[11]

Background

Hubbel Relat is the former vice president for state policy and general counsel for American Energy Alliance. He worked as director of external relations for the pro-fossil fuel group Fueling US Forward before joining the US Department of Interior as special assistant to the solicitor in July 2018. As of January 2019, Relat worked as counselor to David Bernhardt, acting Secretary of the DOI[1], [11]

Relat has written for Fueling U.S. Forward, a Koch-funded front group crafted by veteran Washington communications specialists. The organization — led by long-time fossil fuel executive and lobbyist Charlie Drevna — seeks to present oil and gas as savior fuels without any mention of the well-known impacts of fossil fuel pollution on our air, water, health and climate. [2]

Relat is also is the former associate director of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation and has worked with the Koch-affiliated i360 and Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce where he was chief strategist. [3][11]

Stance on Climate Change

Speaking on President Obama's carbon plan at CPAC2016: [4]

“The President's carbon rule, his climate legacy, is fundamentally seeking to transfer wealth from the middle states who rely on affordable energy and have made good energy policy priority and transfer wealth to pay for the bad decisions by states like California and the northeast. […] That's fundamentally what this is–a wealth transfer for states that he likes from states that he does not. ” [2:47:39]

Key Quotes

April 15, 2016

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy declared that there was 'not one single bit of evidence that [the EPA has] destroyed an industry or significantly impacted jobs other than in a positive way.'

This statement is clearly contradicted by reality and credible studies. For example, the economic consulting firm NERA found that the cost of EPA’s so-called 'Clean Power Plan' could total nearly $300 billion. Nearly $300 billion in compliance costs will significantly impact jobs.” [5]

March 31, 2016

“First, wind and solar are intermittent sources of energy, which means they cannot be relied on to provide sufficient electricity at a given point when the grid needs it. Conversely, coal and natural gas are baseload sources of power, precisely because they can be scaled up or down at any given time to meet energy needs. This is a critical difference between renewables and fossil fuels that permanently makes the former unable to actually replace the latter.

The cherry-picking method used to manufacture these projections has been written about extensively.” [6]

July 8, 2015

“The administration equating our commentary on the relevance of the [mercury rule] to [the carbon rule] as “apples to oranges” presents a straw man that distracts from the lesson states should take away from [the mercury rule] — if you start implementing the rule before full legal resolution, there's no going back. Even worse, the EPA is counting on this to happen.” [7]

Key Deeds

February 2019

Relat commented on a new rule proposed at the Department of Interior which would impose limits on public records requests to the department.  Following a significant increase in the number of public records requests filed to the U.S. Department of Interior, which argued it's being targeted by “litigious special interest groups.” [12]

“They are more voluminous,” said Hubbel Relat. “They've delved a little deeper into the quest for a range of information that appears to, at times, be asking for every document that's ever been created by the Department of the Interior.” [12]

“What this [new rule] does is allow us to say, 'OK. We will produce a set number of documents and then we are going to move to the next requester and then and on and on,” Relat said. “So everyone gets the same amount of documents and we will return to your request once everybody has had a turn.” [12]

Others have argued the changes would make it more difficult for the public to learn what is going on at the DOI[12]

“The changes are really incredible,” said Adam Marshall, a staff attorney with the Reporters Committee For Freedom of the Press. “And not in a good way.” [12]

The Western Values Project, a non-profit watchdog group that has frequently requested documents from the DOI, commented: [12]

“What they are doing is a very thinly veiled effort to target critics of the Trump administration and to keep their corruption a secret,” said Chris Saeger, the Western Values Project's executive director. [12]

“We file public records requests in order to find out if the people who run the Department of the Interior have conflicts of interests with the companies that they are supposed to regulate.” [12]

January 21, 2017

FUSF awarded three African-American students at Northwest Halifax High School $1,500 in scholarships for an electrical lineman training program. Hubbel Relat, FUSF' said Fueling U.S. Forward was making an effort to reach minority communities, reported Dailytarheel.com[10]

“Despite how important this industry is to all of our lives and our economy, the African-American communities and a lot of rural communities in general are underrepresented and left out of this industry,” Relat said. “A lot of the time they are simply not made aware of the job opportunities in the industry.” [10]

June 16, 2016

Hubbel Relat appeared on a panel titled Energy: Changing the Narrative, “presumably meant to change the narrative of climate change to one of energy independence” reported The Nation. [9]

Other panelists included Nancy Pfotenhauer, the president of MediaSpeak Strategies and former director of Koch Industries’ Washington Office, and Karen Steward,  Director of Research at Freedom Partners. [9]

March 3, 2016

Hubbel Relat, representing the American Energy Alliance, spoke at CPAC 2016. He spoke about President Obama's carbon plan, contending it was essentially wealth transfer: [4]

“The President's carbon rule, his climate legacy, is fundamentally seeking to transfer wealth from the middle states who rely on affordable energy and have made good energy policy priority and transfer wealth to pay for the bad decisions by states like California and the northeast. […] That's fundamentally what this is–a wealth transfer for states that he likes from states that he does not. ” [2:47:39]

Affiliations

Publications

Sample publications at AEA:

Sample publications at Fueling US Forward:

Resources

  1. Staff: Hubbel Relat,” American Energy Alliance. Archived December 8, 2016. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog. 

  2. These Moments: The Internet,” November 16, 2016. Archived December 10, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/jhwst

  3. Exclusive: Inside the Koch Brothers’ Secret Billionaire Summit,” The Nation, June 17, 2014. Archived December 8, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/lFFRo

  4. #CPAC2016: Romney v. Trump, Rubio v. Cruz, Amnesty, Obamacare, & Death penalty,” YouTube video uploaded by user The Real Side, March 3, 2016. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog. Video starts at [2:45:12]

  5. The Two Faces of Coal Opposition,” American Energy Alliance, April 15, 2016. Archived December 8, 2016. archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/5MsVD

  6. EPA’s Deceptive Defense of Carbon Rule,” American Energy  Alliance, March 31, 2016. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/bJHVr

  7. Zack Colman. “States working on power-plant compliance plans,” Washington Examiner, July 8, 2015. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/oPj3o

  8. Member Profile: Mr. Hubbel Relat,” Republication National Lawyers Association. Archived December 10, 2016. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/u8O3K

  9. Lauren Windsor. “Exclusive: Inside the Koch Brothers’ Secret Billionaire Summit,” The Nation, June 17, 2014. Archived March 13, 2017. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/n8e5c

  10. Camille Vargas. “Fossil fuel advocacy campaign offers scholarships to African-American students,” Dailytarheel.com, March 6, 2017. Archived April 11, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/3bjHI

  11. Hubbel Relat,” LinkedIn. Accessed February 27, 2019.

  12. Interior Dept.'s Push To Limit Public Records Requests Draws Criticism,” NPR, February 27, 2019. Archived February 27, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/n2IMk