2019-03-17 14:22:04 UTC
Because of The Great Climate Change Conspiracy - Their Funding For
Conservative Organizations & Politicians Will Cease Immediately.
"Dark Money" Funds Climate Change Denial Effort
A Drexel University study finds that a large slice of donations to
organizations that deny global warming are funneled through third-party
pass-through organizations that conceal the original funder
By Douglas Fischer, The Daily Climate on December 23, 2013
The largest, most-consistent money fueling the climate denial movement are
a number of well-funded conservative foundations built with so-called "dark
money," or concealed donations, according to an analysis released Friday
The study, by Drexel University environmental sociologist Robert Brulle, is
the first academic effort to probe the organizational underpinnings and
funding behind the climate denial movement.
It found that the amount of money flowing through third-party, pass-through
foundations like DonorsTrust and Donors Capital, whose funding cannot be
traced, has risen dramatically over the past five years.
In all, 140 foundations funneled $558 million to almost 100 climate denial
organizations from 2003 to 2010.
Meanwhile the traceable cash flow from more traditional sources, such as
Koch Industries and ExxonMobil, has disappeared.
The study was published Friday in the journal Climatic Change.
"The climate change countermovement has had a real political and ecological
impact on the failure of the world to act on global warming," Brulle said
in a statement. "Like a play on Broadway, the countermovement has stars in
the spotlight often prominent contrarian scientists or conservative
politicians but behind the stars is an organizational structure of
directors, script writers and producers."
"If you want to understand what's driving this movement, you have to look
at what's going on behind the scenes."
To uncover that, Brulle developed a list of 118 influential climate denial
organizations in the United States. He then coded data on philanthropic
funding for each organization, combining information from the Foundation
Center, a database of global philanthropy, with financial data submitted by
organizations to the Internal Revenue Service.
According to Brulle, the largest and most consistent funders where a number
of conservative foundations promoting "ultra-free-market ideas" in many
realms, among them the Searle Freedom Trust, the John Williams Pope
Foundation, the Howard Charitable Foundation and the Sarah Scaife
Another key finding: From 2003 to 2007, Koch Affiliated Foundations and the
ExxonMobil Foundation were "heavily involved" in funding climate change
denial efforts. But Exxon hasn't made a publically traceable contribution
since 2008, and Koch's efforts dramatically declined, Brulle said.
Coinciding with a decline in traceable funding, Brulle found a dramatic
rise in the cash flowing to denial organizations from DonorsTrust, a donor-
directed foundation whose funders cannot be traced. This one foundation,
the assessment found, now accounts for 25 percent of all traceable
foundation funding used by organizations promoting the systematic denial of
Jeffrey Zysik, chief financial officer for DonorsTrust, said in an email
that neither DonorsTrust nor Donors Capital Fund "take positions with
respect to any issue advocated by its grantees."
"As with all donor-advised fund programs, grant recommendations are
received from account holders," he said. "DonorsTrust and Donors Capital
Fund ensure that recommended grantees are IRS-approved public charities and
also require that the grantee charities do not rely on significant amounts
of revenue from government sources. DonorsTrust and Donors Capital Fund do
not otherwise drive the selection of grantees, nor conduct in-depth
analyses of projects or grantees unless an account holder specifically
requests that service."
Matter of democracy
In the end, Brulle concluded public records identify only a fraction of the
hundreds of millions of dollars supporting climate denial efforts. Some 75
percent of the income of those organizations, he said, comes via
And for Brulle, that's a matter of democracy. "Without a free flow of
accurate information, democratic politics and government accountability
become impossible," he said. "Money amplifies certain voices above others
and, in effect, gives them a megaphone in the public square."
Powerful funders, he added, are supporting the campaign to deny scientific
findings about global warming and raise doubts about the "roots and
remedies" of a threat on which the science is clear.
"At the very least, American voters deserve to know who is behind these