Friday, July 24, 2009

All in the family

The Center for Public Integrity reports Podesta One and Podesta Two are going head on.

Seems John Podesta, formerly known as co-chair of the Obama transition and Clinton chief of staff, is head of the Center for American Progress, and they really don’t like the term “clean coal.” In fact, they accuse the coal industry of using it to mislead in the debate about energy production, greenhouse gases and air pollution.

Then there’s lesser-known but equally well-connected Tony Podesta. The Center for Public Integrity describes him as “one of Washington’s most successful lobbyists." He's also John's brother. One of his clients? The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity. The coalition paid his Podesta Group lobbying firm $50,000 in the second quarter to make its case during the climate debate in the House.

One of the policy papers by the Center for American Progress lambasts ACCCE as a group of coal and utility companies just stalling on making clean coal mean something. The report says the companies made a combined profit of $57 billion in 2007 but invested only a "paltry" $3.5 billion in clean coal research over several years.

Now I could be wrong, but $3.5 billion isn't extremely paltry in my checkbook, but I get the center's point.

"Meanwhile, atmospheric greenhouse gas levels grow, ice sheets melt, hurricanes become more ferocious, and the day of reckoning for the Earth looms closer," according to the center's paper.

Even the Podestas' gotta make a buck, but there may be a "day of reckoning" in Podestaland if this climate debate thing keeps going.

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