Centrica funding climate denial group linked to Trump
30th December 2016 | Commercial Energy
Centrica, has donated tens of thousands of dollars to a Texas-based climate denial think tank. It has strong links to Donald Trump’s new energy secretary Rick Perry, so says Energydesk.
Centrica (the UK’s largest energy supplier) owns British Gas and is a major investor in UK fracking. It has made a number of donations to the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) over the last five years and plans to continue.
A leaked donor list shows that Centrica’s US subsidiary, Direct Energy, was among TPPF’s largest donors in 2010, at $20,000. Other donors include ExxonMobil, Chevron, the Koch brothers, Devon Energy and a number of other energy companies and climate denial funding bodies.
The Austin-based think tank has played a central role in the US climate denial movement. It is now poised to take control of energy and environmental policy under Donald Trump.
Previously Centrica has sought to position itself as corporate leader on climate action. Earlier this year, its head of environment said that “climate change is one of society’s greatest global challenges”.
Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion and Leader of the UK Green Party, responded to the news. She said, “For a company that has claimed to be at the forefront of action on climate change, it is simply astounding that Centrica is donating money to climate deniers.”
“Now that these links have come to light, we need a clear commitment from Centrica to end all further donations. It is shameful that one of our largest energy companies is linked to this reckless and irresponsible organisation and I hope an apology will be issued shortly.”
Hannah Martin, Energy Campaigner at Greenpeace UK, said, “Centrica claims to be “a world leader for action on climate change”. But it has been donating thousands of dollars to a climate sceptic think tank with links to Trump’s new energy secretary Rick Perry. Perhaps it’s just a case of the right hand not knowing what the left is doing. But this can only undermine Centrica’s credibility on tackling climate change.
“With so many friends in the Trump administration, the US climate denial movement hardly needs a UK company’s money to keep peddling their nonsense.”
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