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The Environmental Movement: How Corrupt Is It?

We have written many times about the corruption of the global warming movement. Billions and billions of dollars are being poured into the pockets of global warming alarmists, because they perform such a valuable service: they help to persuade voters that governments should be given greater control over the world’s economies. What’s a few billion dollars when trillions are at stake?

We have written mostly about the corruption of Greens in America, where Al Gore has become a standing joke. But the Daily Mail has performed the valuable service of exposing the corruption that is rampant among British environmentalists; specifically, global warming alarmists:

The Mail on Sunday today reveals the extraordinary web of political and financial interests creating dozens of eco-millionaires from green levies on household energy bills.

A three-month investigation shows that some of the most outspoken campaigners who demand that consumers pay the colossal price of shifting to renewable energy are also getting rich from their efforts.

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One is tempted to ask why anyone should be surprised by this, but of course, many people had no idea that the environmental movement is a cesspool of corruption.

Enquiries by this newspaper have revealed:

* Four of the nine-person Climate Change Committee, the official watchdog that dictates green energy policy, are, or were until very recently, being paid by firms that benefit from committee decisions.

* A new breed of lucrative green investment funds, which were set up to expand windfarm energy, are in practice a means of taking green levies paid by hard-pressed consumers and handing them to City investors and financiers.

* £3.8 billion of taxpayers’ money funds the new Green Investment Bank, set up by the Department of Business and Skills. One of its biggest deals involved energy giant SSE selling windfarms to one of the new green funds, Greencoat Wind. The Green Investment Bank’s chairman, Lord Smith of Kelvin, is also chairman of SSE. The bank says it ‘provided expertise’ to enable BIS to take a £50 million stake in Greencoat, which helped fund the SSE sale.

* The same bank’s chief executive, Shaun Kingsbury, is one of the UK’s highest-paid public sector employees. His £325,000 salary is more than twice the Prime Minister’s.

* Firms lobbying for renewables can virtually guarantee access to key Government policy-makers, because they are staffed by former very senior officials – a striking example of Whitehall’s ‘revolving door’.

* Among the most astonishing features exposed by our investigation is the way in which vehement advocates for radical policies designed to curb global warming are making huge sums of money from their work. Here are some of the key figures among the new breed of fat-cat Ecocrats…

The paper goes on to name names. It is all worth reading, but I want to highlight just one point:

[Ian Marchant] left to become chairman of Infinis – now the country’s third-largest renewable generator, with 7.3 per cent of the market. He received a “signing-on fee” of £322,000 worth of shares. Last month, Infinis shares were floated, raising £780 million. Its offer brochure claimed that it was an unusually safe investment – simply because of the levies on renewables paid by consumers and imposed by Government diktat.

The brochure said that more than half of Infinis revenue is derived directly from renewable subsidies, describing the green levies added to customers’ bills as “stable, inflation-linked revenue streams backed by legislation incentivising renewable power”.

Of course cronyism is “unusually safe.” If you have to actually compete by producing energy at the lowest price, all kinds of things can go wrong. But if you can get in with the government, so that legislation requires everyone to pay extra for your product whether they want to or not, your investment is “unusually safe.” This is what cronyism–a polite word for corruption–is all about. It is the principal purpose of the modern environmental movement.

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