SAN FRANCISCO: As 120 heads of state and government meet at the United Nations in New York to discuss ways of reaching a climate agreement in 2015, a new report claims U.S. companies, including UPS, are funding climate deniers in the U.S. Congress.
According to Forecast the Facts Action and SumOfUs.org, two U.S.-based grassroots organisations, since 2008 congressmen who deny climate change have received more than US$641 million in campaign contributions from individuals and corporations - including Google, Ford, Microsoft, and e-Bay.
The report says in the past five years UPS has given US$1.9 million to political "climate deniers" including US$36,999 to House of Representatives' Republican Tom Price of Roswell, GA. However it is worth noting that as UPS is headquartered in Price's congressional district, its contributions to the politician may be for reasons other than climate denial.
Commenting on the report, SumOfUs.org campaign director Paul Ferris said: "The willingness of wealthy contributors to supply funding for climate change denial, and the eagerness of Senators and House Representatives in both parties to receive that funding, has corrupted responsible, effective governance, motivating elected officials to respond to the wishes of financial backers, as opposed to the needs of their constituents,"
The 160-member congressional caucus has been credited with blocking the passage of the American Clean Energy and Security Act in 2010.
In a coincident announcement, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF), a private charitable foundation established in 1940, has announced it is disinvesting from the fossil fuel coal and tar sand sector by the end of the year because of its "deep commitment to combatting climate change".
RBF says it is now focused on support for clean energy technologies and "other business strategies that advance energy efficiency, decrease dependence on fossil fuels, and mitigate the effects of climate change".