Paul J. Everett/ FlickrOut-of-state polluters are donating large amounts of money to stymie climate legislation in California.
Industrial polluters from outside of California, including Koch Industries, are stepping up the pressure to kill AB 32, California’s landmark climate change law, by flooding millions of dollars into the campaign set to derail the landmark legislation.
“Our company believes the implementation of AB 32 will set a bad precedent for regulations in other states and the federal government,” said Katie Stavinoha, spokeswoman for Flint Hills Resources.
The following day, the Texas-based Tesoro Corporation contributed $1 million on top of the more than $500,000 already donated to the campaign. Additional recent out-of-state donors include Texas-based Valero Energy Corp., Texas-based Frontier Oil Corp., and the Utah-based Western Petroleum Marketers Association.
Only one group donating to the "Yes on 23" campaign in the last month – the California American Council of Engineering Companies Issues Fund – is from California.
Of the more than $8.3 million contributed to the “Yes on 23” campaign, less than $1 million has come from within the state.
Proposition 23 will appear on the November ballot and, if passed, will suspend AB 32 until unemployment falls below 5.5% for four consecutive quarters.
“Texas and other out-of-state polluters are trying to buy Californians’ votes and continue polluting California’s clean air,” said Ann Notthoff, California advocacy director for the Natural Resources Defense Council. “But we see through the smoke they are blowing on California.”
The Natural Resources Defense Council Action Fund has contributed around $1 million to oppose Proposition 23.
Estimated revenues for Koch Industries in 2009 hovered around $40 billion, which makes it it bigger than Microsoft, Merrill Lynch and AT&T.
According to the Flint Hills Resources company website, the refining and chemical company was designated as one of the world’s most ethical companies for the past three years by the Ethisphere Institute.
The "Yes on 23" campaign could not be reached for comment.