Miles Grant

Miles Grant blogs for the National Wildlife Federation


Senate GOP: Nuke, baby, nuke!

Republicans in the Senate claim to have an “alternative” to the Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act. (OK, so it was just Sen. Lamar Alexander, but we’ll accept his claim that he has some so-far-anonymous colleagues behind him). But on closer inspection, chances that their plans would affect clean energy or energy security seem dim. First, let’s look at what ACES aims to accomplish: To reduce global warming pollution and increase our energy security by creating new incentives for clean, made-in-America energy while containing costs to consumers. So would Sen. Alexander’s plan address these issues? Let’s break it down: …

One-Way Bleat

Do as Heartland says, not as it does

If you’re a green blogger who wants to cover a Heartland Institute event, you better pony up hundreds of dollars in entrance fees or you’re not allowed inside. But if you’re a Congressman holding a hearing on global warming and you don’t invite a spokesman from the Heartland Institute to testify, you’re a fascist who silences dissenting voices:


Heartland Institute terrified of Grist

Can I cover Heartland Institute events as media? It depends on who’s watching when I ask the question. Back in March 2008, the Heartland Institute held its “First International Conference on Climate Change” in New York City. Heartland is one of the leading oil industry-funded deniers of global warming. According to, it’s received $561,500 (unadjusted for inflation) from ExxonMobil between 1998 and 2005. When I emailed to request credentials to cover the event as a blogger, Heartland’s events manager told me, “I am so sorry but we are sold out, I have no extra space.” But when I showed …

The incredible shrinking tent

Republican counter-strategy on climate: Revenge!

How much smaller can the climate denial tent get? We’re about to find out. With companies as diverse as Nike, Johnson & Johnson and Ford Motor Company having joined the call for comprehensive clean energy & climate legislation, the Republican Party has come up with its counter-strategy: “To fight bill, GOP turns on business,” declares the headline in today’s Politico, citing a Double-Secret Probation Leaked Memo from Republican staffers for the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. (The lesson: If you want people to read your memo, pretend it’s secret, then “leak” it to anyone who’ll take it.) Earlier …

Chamber vs. Chamber

It’s hard to listen to someone complain about getting dumped. “Why won’t she come back? Doesn’t she know I can change? Just give me one more chance!” Lots of difficult questions with painful answers you’d really rather not get into. Which is why it was really hard to sit at the US Chamber of Commerce’s energy “dialogue” Wednesday morning in Washington, listening to polluters bemoan America’s momentum towards climate action amid the Chamber’s public split on the issue. Johnson & Johson, Nike and other members delivered a stinging rebuke on the Chamber’s climate obstruction last week. Then on the day …

Six degrees of ExxonMobil

Revealing skeptics as sock puppets in a few quick clicks

Want to play a fun Friday game? It's called Six Degrees of ExxonMobil. The object: To see how quickly you can get from a denier to ExxonMobil's coffers. All you need to start is an opinion piece by a global warming denier. Let's take this column by Deroy Murdock for Scripps Howard News Service (he's also a contributing editor for the National Review Online). OK, let's start. Deroy Murdock is a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University. The Hoover Institution has received at least $295,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998. Wow, wasn't that easy and fun? OK, so it's not quite "Bruce Campbell was in The Majestic with Susan Willis, who was in Mystic River with Kevin Bacon," but the connection is just as reliable.

Be green, get rich?

Budget-saving tips awfully similar to planet-preserving prescriptions

Who are you to deny me my two-car garage filled with junk, an elegant dining room I’ll never use, and massive heating/cooling bills? That’s the basic response from critics when greens question McMansions in particular and our consumer culture in general. I mean, isn’t newer, bigger, better the American way? Didn’t President Bush urge us to go shopping more? But one financial advisor says trying to look rich by buying so much stuff is keeping some Americans from being rich. And while he never once mentions the environment, his prescriptions for building your savings have a lot in common with …

You know the drill

Congress goes back to work on energy

Before Congress’ recess, a minority of lawmakers continued to block critical measures that could help break America’s addiction to oil, give consumers real energy choices, recharge our economy, and help solve global warming. Legislation to extend production tax credits for solar, wind, geothermal, and other renewable sources passed the House again and again only to fall short each time in the Senate. Once the legislation fell just a single vote short, with 59 senators voting to end a filibuster. This week, the House goes back to work with the Senate following suit shortly thereafter. But will the outcome this time …

Double pandered

Media focuses on high costs of clean energy, but gives nuclear a free pass

When the media talks about clean energy, it usually deals with the cost issue with a rational, balanced analysis. Something along the lines of, say, “It’s so expensive!“ Yet somehow, in Keith Johnson’s Environmental Capital blog post today slamming greens for not supporting nukes, the cost issue is little more than an afterthought. The nuclear industry wants $50 billion in loan guarantees? Hardly seems worth mentioning. A full 320 words into a 346 word post, Johnson shares this insight: Plus, nuclear power’s not cheap. Oh, really? Glad he managed to squeeze that five-word footnote in. Johnson also finds the space …

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