sins of commission

 

 
 
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Posts Tagged ‘Environmental Defense Center’

California Conservation Groups At It Again

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

In yet another example of “what good for me is what is good for the environment…”

What’s wrong with this picture?

Conservation groups last Wednesday unveiled a new version of their lobbying efforts for an oil company’s expansion of drilling off the coast of California in exchange for definite end dates to its local petroleum operations.

The project could inadvertently open up the entire California coastline to new drilling, ending a 40-year moratorium. (Associated Press)

I guess the wholesale sellout and degradation of California’s resources only makes sense if it is done by and for the benefit of environmental groups- whether on our waters or on our land. 

We Won’t Get Fooled Again

Funny, it is those same groups that say developers can’t build, homeowners can’t expand, and ranchers and farmers can’t do their thing - but - as long as they are the recipient of an oil company bribe, I mean donation - it’s OK to degrade the environment.  

Even the fact President Barack Obama opened many federal waters to drilling — except along the West Coast means nothing. The only thing that matters is they get their $100,000 C.O.D.

Assemblyman Pedro Nava, D-Santa Barbara, who is running for state attorney general, said the agreement is not in the best interest for the state.

Bottom line for me, in 2008 we were told that the deal was the deal of the century and it wasn’t, he said. “Why am I going to believe this one is any better than the last one?”  (Associated Press)

Bottom line - it all boils down to payoff, payoff, payoff.

Other environmental groups raised concerns that the end date may not be enforceable. Others worried that approving the project could inadvertently open up the entire California coastline to new drilling, ending a 40-year moratorium.   (Associated Press)

… backers said there are no title or other issues to prevent PXP from turning over 3,900 acres on shore to the Trust for Public Land. (Associated Press)

And we all know how land-addicted the California Coastal Commission and conservancies are. Although It it is sketchy how much the Environmental Defense Center is getting paid, in the previous contract, PXP agreed to pay the groups’ fees and out-of-pocket-costs, as well as $50,000 up front and another $50,000 upon approval.

In exchange, the environmental groups agreed to lobby in writing for the project and testify at public hearings before State Lands, Santa Barbara County and the California Coastal Commission.  (Associated Press)

Time for Change on the California Coast

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

“Power never concedes anything without a demand; it never has and it never will.”

Frederick Douglass (no relation to Peter Douglas)

Yesterday’s blog post was about secret back room deals resulting in a covert agreement between an environmental grout Environmental Defense Center, EDC and Huston based Oil company PXP. This revelation seems to suggest just how twisted our system has become and offers the possibility that the system may be too broken to be fixed by politicians, commissions, and other so-called government insiders.

Regarding all matters coastal, change if it going to be real, and long lasting must come from outside Sacramento. It is time for all of us to take a good sharp look at the California Coastal Commission, and other land management resource agencies to see exactly how things get done along the coast of California.

Like a boil that can never be cured so long as it is covered up but must be opened with all its ugliness to the natural medicines of air and light, injustice must be exposed, with all the tension its exposure creates, to the light of human conscience and the air of national opinion before it can be cured.

Martin Luther King

I always wonder why we people say we won’t get fooled again but inevitably do. Could it be that the new boss is the same as the old boss?

SECRET AGREEMENT - SIN OF COMMISSION

Monday, January 18th, 2010

The fate of public lands cannot be decided in contracts negotiated behind closed doors.

Controller John Chiang,  Lands Commission member

I’ve been looking for a way to demonstrate what I call the new eco-industrial complex while raising awareness about whole-scale corruption in the “name of the environment” then I read this little Dusey about a secret agreement between an oil company and a California environmental group, thank-you Calbuzz, and the pieces fit neatly into place.

It seems there is some kind of a secret pact between Huston based oil company PXP and Environmental Defense Center (EDC).

EDC has been prominent in the decades-long fight against offshore drilling in California according to Calbuzz.

Wait a second.

EDC, a prominent environmental group, has been publicly eschewing off-shore drilling but privately endorsing PXP’s application for lease to slant drill into state waters, from an existing platform under federal jurisdiction, more than three miles offshore.

It is shameful that an oil company got an environmental group - in this case Environmental Defense Center to do its bidding for YEARS for a piddly 100k… peanuts compared to the billions PXP is going to make.

PXP and EDC said they recently incorporated amendments to the agreement to address criticisms raised at the initial State Lands Commission hearing by strengthening written assurances that the promised benefits of the agreement will materialize.

Calbuzz

In one fell swoop EDC has not only tarnished environmental groups and raises the pay-for-play question, but has trashed the street cred of the State Lands Commission, and all the other agencies under them. This revelation raises some very uncomfortable questions - similar to the ones I raise in SINS OF COMMISSION that demand rigorous investigation and appropriate action.

SINS OF COMMISSION reveals that for decades the California Coastal Commission, an agency of state, engages in environmental degradation in exchange for a dedication of land or an easement of property.

Now it seems this deal-making behind closed doors is “business as usual.” - despite claims of transparency. If recent scandal-ridden history has taught us anything…this is just the tip of theiceberg.

…it is not unusual for environmental groups to keep private the legal agreements or settlements it makes with corporations applying for permits or leases before public agencies.

Linda Krop, chief counsel for the Environmental Defense Center

If it is a private deal that is one thing… but oil leases are not generally considered private….oil leases are a public resource.

If permission is given, this would be the first lease granted by the state since Union Oil’s disastrous 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill - an oil spill that lead to vociferous public outrage- an outrage that needs voice now right here in California.

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Read more at Calbuzz:



 
 
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