White House Environmental Chief Launches Stealth Attack on Climate Science

Fri, 2006-07-21 12:05Ross Gelbspan
Ross Gelbspan's picture

White House Environmental Chief Launches Stealth Attack on Climate Science

James Connaughton, head of the White House Environmental Office (CEQ)James Connaughton told Congress:  “There’s a lot of agreement … on warming…We begin to get into issues [of disagreement] about the extent to which humans are a problem.”

If there's agreement, why did Connaughton's agency appoint as chief of staff  an aide to Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) – the most vehement denier in the US Congress – the same Inhofe who called global warming “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American public.”

Sen. Inhofe aide to become CEQ chief of staff, sources say

E&ENews, May 31, 2006

A top staff member with the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will be named later this week to the chief of staff position at the White House Council on Environmental Quality, sources on and off Capitol Hill said today.

Marty Hall, deputy staff director for the committee, would fill a slot that has seen significant turnover in the last year. The White House plans to officially announce the move Friday, sources said. In March, former CEQ chief of staff Bryan Hannegan resigned for personal reasons, ending speculation that he would be President Bush's choice to replace James Mahoney as deputy administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Hannegan's predecessor, Philip Cooney, resigned last spring after reports that he edited government climate reports to soften the link between global warming and industrial emissions of greenhouse gases. 

Hall, former spokesman for the Senate panel, declined comment. He has worked for the environment panel since 2000 and currently works under Andrew Wheeler, the staff director for Chairman James Inhofe (R-Okla.). Hall has worked previously at Gulfstream TLC and the Concord Resources Group. He is a 1988 graduate of Northwestern University.

A White House spokeswoman could not be reached for comment by press time.

Every good magician knows that the key to success is misdirecting the audience. You have to draw everyone’s attention away from your ultimate goal in order to perform the trick. Politics is no different, and one of the greatest misdirections in recent memory has been pulled off by the fossil fuel industry.

While most of the environmental movement was (rightfully) focusing attention on stopping the Keystone XL tar sands export pipeline from crossing over one of the most vital aquifers in the U.S., the dirty energy industry was quietly building a network of...

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