Brad Johnson

Brad Johnson is the campaign manager of Forecast the Facts. He was previously the editor for ThinkProgress Green. Brad holds a bachelor's degree in math and physics from Amherst College and master's degree in geosciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Red grid scare

Glenn Beck attacks smart grid as socialist plot to steal our thermostats

This post originally appeared at the Wonk Room. Glenn Beck, the conservative ideologue whose show is mocked by fellow Fox News anchors, recently attacked plans to modernize our electric grid. After Carol Browner, President Obama’s climate and energy adviser, said that a smart grid means “we can get to a system where an electric company will be able to hold back some of the power so that maybe your air conditioner won’t operate at its peak, you’ll still be able to cool your house, but that’ll be a savings to the consumer,” Beck argued that would lead to “one-world government” …

A Wolf in tool's clothing

Wolf Blitzer parrots right-wing talking points on global warming

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. Last week on the Situation Room, CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer parroted right-wing talking points on global warming. His program emphasized that Monday's climate crisis protest took place in the cold -- a talking point pushed by Sen. Jim Inhofe's (R-OK) office and global warming deniers from Glenn Beck to Nancy Pfotenhauer. He then followed the Heritage Foundation's reasoning to challenge Tony Blair on the urgency of establishing a cap on carbon pollution, asking if it is "wise" to "effectively impose a new tax on consumers" instead of dealing with "bread-and-butter issues": At a time of this extraordinary economic distress, not only here in the United States but around the world, why go forward right now as a priority with all of these global warming related projects? It seems there are so many other key bread-and-butter issues literally on the table. ... Is it wise to go ahead, effectively impose a new tax on consumers right now, an energy-related tax, this uh, uh cap-and-trade if you will, to try to reduce carbon emissions right now? In effect that's going to be higher costs on consumers who use either gasoline or other electricity, forms of energy. Is that wise at a time of economic distress? Watch it: Blitzer summarized: "You say do it now despite all the economic issues." Blitzer is missing a few key facts:

Morano's misinformation machine

Marc Morano's secret list of climate deniers

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. Marc Morano, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK)'s environmental aide, sits at the center of the right-wing global warming denier propaganda machine -- of fifty-two people. Conservative columnist Fred Barnes recently refused to tell TPM Muckraker who's informed him "the case for global warming" is falling apart, but all signs point to Marc Morano. Morano's "entire job," David Roberts explains, "is to aggregate every misleading factoid, every attack on climate science or scientists, every crank skeptical statement from anyone in the world and send it all out periodically in email blasts" to the right-wing echo chamber. The Wonk Room has acquired Morano's email list, and we can now reveal the pack of climate skeptics, conservative bloggers, and corporate hacks who feed the misinformation machine. Promoted on the Drudge Report and Fox News, Morano's moronic misinformation enters mainstream discourse through columns by Barnes, George Will, Robert Samuelson, and others. Many in the Morano gang are funded by right-wing think tanks, though a few are committed activists, conspiracy theorists who believe their home-brew interpretations of climate data. Others are aging scientists with strong conservative beliefs, motivating them to challenge action on global warming not because they disbelieve its existence, but because they are ideologically opposed to regulation of pollution:

Dirty coal in, dirty coal out

'Coal makes no sense in this day and age'

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. The coal industry has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to get out the message of "clean coal" through front groups like the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, campaign contributions, and an army of lobbyists. But the devastating Dec. 22, 2008, coal ash slurry spill of the Kingston Fossil Plant in rural Tennessee broke through the cacophony of clean coal carolers. The sludge came from "cleaning" coal of toxic metals like arsenic, mercury, and lead so less went into the air. This ThinkProgress Wonk Room video is a stark reminder that in reality, coal isn't clean. Watch it: This week the news of progress away from dirty coal has reached a fever pitch:

Lamar Alexander: 'Coal Is A Dirty Business'

So much for 'clean coal'

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. Before Thursday's Senate hearing on the devastating Tennessee coal plant billion-gallon ash spill, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) demolished the "clean coal" myth. Alexander told Knoxville's WVLT-TV: Coal is a dirty business. Watch it:

Coal blogging is fun!

Coal front group sets up ‘Blogger Brigade’ to fight reality

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. The coal industry is attempting to organize bloggers to promote their false “clean coal” propaganda. The Reality Coalition, a group of national environmental organizations, have begun airing the message that “There’s no such thing as clean coal,” to counter the hundreds of millions of dollars spent by coal-powered corporations to pretend that coal is a “clean” fuel. So the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE) and Americans for Balanced Energy Choices (ABEC), essentially one coal propaganda group with two different faces, is fighting back with an email blast asking people to join their …

New energy economy 'No. 1 priority'

Obama plans green listening tour

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. —– Dan Kammen, the director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory at UC Berkeley and a top adviser to President-elect Barack Obama, has told E&E News ($ub. req’d) that Obama may conduct a nationwide “listening tour” to allow his team to hit the ground running for a green recovery: The incoming Obama team is considering a “listening tour” around the country on energy and environmental issues before Inauguration Day in an attempt to build momentum for its policies and legislative plans. Last month, Obama told Time’s Joe Klein that an “Apollo project” for …

Shilled to pieces

On election day, King Coal celebrates public relations ‘landslide’

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. —– The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), the coal industry’s propaganda front group, is upbeat about this election day, as indicated by their press release today. ACCCE VP Joe Lucas claimed: If “support for the use of coal for generating electricity” were on the ballot today, it would win by a landslide. His choice of words is unfortunate, as landslides are only one of the many deadly hazards of coal mining, especially under the lax safety enforcement of the Bush administration. ACCCE is celebrating a poll that showed their $50 million propaganda …

It's still 1976 in California (in electricity use)

Study: California’s green economy has created 1.5 million jobs, $45 billion

Originally posted at the Wonk Room. —– As Bush’s pollution-based policies continue to drive our economy and planet to the brink of disaster, conservatives are crying that changing course with progressive energy policies would “ravage the countryside” with “huge economic costs.” But a major new study of the success of California’s green economy tells the true story: a green recovery will restore the middle class, lift people out of poverty, and protect the planet. The study by economist David Roland-Holst finds that “California’s energy-efficiency policies created nearly 1.5 million jobs from 1977 to 2007, while eliminating fewer than 25,000.” Today, …