Either way, it’s all the same, corporate whores who can’t get it up! Today, a little accountability.

Today Environmental Defense’s office in Washington D.C. was occupied and re-branded “Environmental Offense.” Yes, the office of ED was occupied by members of Global Justice Ecology Project, Global Forest Coalition, and Rising Tide North America and Rising Tide Ecuador. ED was scoured and tested by Green & Wash LLC, and awarded with a CRAP credit… Certified Realists for Atmospheric Privatization, that is…

First Hand Account of Environmental Defense Occupation

ED Update on It’s Getting Hot in Here

Today, Environmental Defense, tomorrow, the Izaak Walton League/Wind on the Wires? The Doris Duke Foundation? (Doris Duke just dumped $750k into National Resources Defense Council for Cap & Trade). The Joyce Foundation? I hope they understand that we know who they are and we know what they’re doing!

The office was taped off as a Global Warming Crime Scene:

Here is the full statement in technicolor from Dr. Rachel Smolker, daughter of one of the founders of Environmental Defense, Robert E. Smolker, taken from the Global Justice Ecology Project site:

My name is Rachel Smolker. When I was a child, growing up on Long Island, my father, Robert E Smolker, along with Charlie Wurster, Dennis Puleston and Art Cooley, used to sit around in the living room sipping their beers and discuss environmental issues. My father, an ornithologist, was observing the thinning of predatory bird eggshells caused by DDT, Rachel Carson’s seminal work on the impacts of pesticides was still relatively warm off the presses, and their were already many, many indications that virtually all ecosystems were in decline: the beautiful wetlands surrounding our island were contaminated and littered with garbage, fisheries were declining, and from afar, the drumbeat of deforestation, pollution, and climate change. Yes, way back then. Climate change was an issue very few knew anything about, but I would say it came as no surprise o those who spent time in the natural world and understood the delicate intricacies of ecological systems on a tiny blue speck of a planet, more or less accidentally blanketed in a thin and accommodating atmosphere.

I watched these men as they talked, sometimes seriously, sometimes with tremendous humor, and almost always with a deep sense of commitment and comeraderie. I was 10-12 years old, on the brink of puberty and frankly not all that much interested, but I respected them and as I grew up recognized the importance of this phenomenon, called EDF, which germinated out of the couches of my home.

My father and his friends celebrated their capacity to act together when EDF achieved bans on DDT in the early 70s. They brought lawyers and scientists and fundraisers and administrators and many others onboard and expanded the organization, experienced and overcame some growing pains and enjoyed a number of victories.

My father passed away in 1985. By that time, EDF had at least a few offices dotted around the country, and sizeable resources. The organization was, already, under the leadership of Fredd Krupp. Before his death, he complained to me that he “did not approve of the direction in which the organization was headed”.

Why? What was he foreseeing? I think I understand now:

EDF has swelled and mushroomed into the darling of the corporate world: advocating for “market incentives” to “encourage” corporations to stop their destructive practices, provided they do not cause “economic hardship”. Like the corporations you have befriended, you too have become entirely beholden to the gods of endless economic growth. The goal of protecting the environment has been relegated to the back seat.

EDF’s corporate partnership approach sounded friendly and sort of “new” back in the 80’s. Sure, perhaps there was some potential in trying to reform polluting practices “from the inside”. EDF proudly designed the market trading system for sulphur emissions causing acid rain, among numerous other accomplishments. That emissions trading model, hailed as a breakthrough in “harnessing market forces in service of environmental goals”, has now been carried over to the international arena and become the central approach to addressing global warming emissions.

Carbon emissions trading is now formally enshrined within the Kyoto Protocol, and within almost every state, federal and international initiative for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It has in fact become pretty much the only game in town.

You argue that it is the “least expensive” means of lowering emissions, allowing companies to avoid costly abatement by purchasing credits from others who could more easily reduce their emissions. A sort of “kinder gentler” approach to lowering carbon emissions.

But let me ask you. Is it working? Has it worked? Will it work fast enough? Is it in our best interests at this point to make things kind and gentle and inexpensive for these polluters? Is that our priority?

I would ask that you take a trip outside of Washington, put on your boots and jeans and anoraks: travel to the Arctic community of Kivalina and talk with the folks there who are filing suit against your bedfellows in the fossil fuel industry over the extermination of their community and their entire lifestyle. I say, you are guilty by association. EDF has become the mistress of murderers. While James Hansen and others suggest they should
be put on trial for their crimes against humanity, you would have us reward them!

You would have us reward them by turning the atmosphere into private property, dividing it into pieces and generously bequeathing the pieces as gifts to these corporate criminals. And in doing so, you provide them with a license to carry on with their dirty business and pretend to be doing something other than advancing their own profits. While they drill and mine and pump and plunder with one hand, the other is busy shaking hands with Fred Krupp. EDF has been the primary architects and advocates of “market approaches” which do nothing but pad the coffers of climate criminals while doing nothing to avert global warming.

EDF has turned itself into a corporate makeover facility. The most polluting companies on earth walk in here seeking advice on how to better paint themselves green. EDF does the paint job and then hands out free samples and an eternity’s worth of coupons for future cash-in. What comes out the other end is business as usual, and a few added digits on the organization‚s salary balance sheets.

I have two young children. I am not going to launch into a teary-eyed appeal to you about their future, don‚’t worry.

No: I am going to tell you something about being a parent that I think is relevant: When my children do something naughty, do I yell at them and take away some privileges? Or do I offer them a candy in exchange for halting their naughtiness? Welllll- some would advocate the candy approach, but what happens when they realize that the outcome of their naughtiness is to receive candy? Of course they can’t wait to be naughty again! That is your approach to dealing with polluting corporations; reward them with permits to pollute and a new paintjob.

That is why they are knocking down your doors. Your Climate Action Partnership? Well, no shit Sherlock – the dirtiest most polluting industries made windfall profits off the European Emissions Trading Scheme, which has been deemed completely ineffective if not counterproductive as a means of reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.

No wonder these corporations are eager to sign on to the CAP and have you championing such an approach! They know the climate change grim reaper is on his way. They see the writing on the walls. Would they prefer to be regulated and fined and forced to behave like proper citizens of the global community? Or would they prefer to hide behind some smoke and mirrors, receive permits to pollute, pass along the cost of purchasing those permits to their ratepayers if possible, and then rake in rewards for sort of maybe doing what they should absolutely for the sake of us all should be doing in any case? You provide them the means to enhance profits and paint themselves green at the same time! WoW!

We cannot pretend that handing out permits to pollute and then trading them around like baseball cards is even remotely related to seriously reducing emissions. It is a great get-rich-quick scheme for the brokers, marketers and financiers who enjoy playing games with my childrens‚ future, and it is a huge gift to the polluting criminals.

Offsetting emissions is a similar deceit, nothing but another fine arrangement of smoke and mirrors that allow some people to “feel good” while continuing to carry on business as usual. They provide a convenient way to sidestep and avoid real and necessary change. It is, without question, a lovely idea to provide funding to really good “quality” projects that hold promise of reducing emissions, but there are more straightforward ways to get there that do not require unfounded and unreliable measures of carbon flow, additionality, verifiability or permanence, and do not confuse fossil and biological carbon. We clearly
need to halt, not offset emissions, even where it is a hard thing, a very hard thing to do.

We are here today because we have simply had enough. In fact we reached that point quite a while ago, and since then have been gathering our courage and building the solidarity that is required to stand up for the very future of life on earth in the most effective, meaningful manner possible. It is a mightily sad state of affairs, when a group of dedicated activists, who are keenly aware of the dire crisis we are facing, must come to the offices of one of the world‚s biggest and most influential “environmental organizations” to protest. People you see before you have chained themselves to the gates of coal fired power plants and to the doors of the World Bank. They have stood up to corporate thugs and threats, they have put themselves in harms way to stand up for what is right and what MUST be done to protect the future of life.

We cannot afford to wait, or to fail, or to only half succeed at this point.

EDF: It is time to admit to the failure of the market based policies you are advocating: The Kyoto Protocol, the European Trading Scheme – these have failed us, and in the process have blinded and bedazzled so many that the real solutions to the crisis have fallen into the shadows where they are languishing. Now it is time to face the facts and turn every ounce of your substantial weight towards DEMANDING that your corporate bedfellows strip off their phony green veneer, halt the pillaging of our futures, and give REAL solutions to climate change their due opportunity. Yes it will be hard, yes it will force change upon the polluters. But the cost of inaction, or ineffective action, will be much, much greater.

The incoming administration has made it clear that they intend to adopt a cap and trade legislation, along with a suite of other questionable steps intended to address the crisis of climate change, including “clean coal,” nuclear energy and agrofuels. EDF as a massively influential organization will undoubtedly play a role in shaping this legislation. It is time to stop pandering to the corporate criminals. We can no longer make corporate profits a priority over swift and severe measures to avoid catastrophe. We can no longer concern ourselves with making it easy or less costly or any other such warm and fuzzy goodwill towards the corporations that are responsible for the destruction. We can no longer count on the magic of markets to achieve the deep, real, meaningful and essential changes that are needed.

EDF: I wish I could say I am proud of my own father’s legacy! But it is, sadly, the case that I have to apologize, offer disclaimers, make explanations when pronouncing my relationship to this organization. I can hear my father rolling over in his grave! EDF has strayed so far from his vision, from the mission of protecting and advocating for the environment, that it would now be completely unrecognizable to him. Were he to rise up from the dead, I can only hope that these plush digs and six figure salaries would convince him there is no relationship between the current manifestation of this organization and himself.

For me, it is deeply ironic that I find myself here today, taking action against this organization which so shaped my early world view, and which I have now come to see as a primary obstacle to averting planetary crisis: the architects and powerful advocates of extraordinarily dangerous and distracting policy advice.

I HOPE that the people working here will take a very deep look in the mirror and ask yourselves: are we REALLY doing the right thing? Are we true to our mission? To ourselves? To our children and to the future of life on this little blue speck?

CLICK HERE : Native Village of Kivalina and City of Kivalina – Complaint for Damages