This post was originally published on the website of the Center for Public Integrity and is reposted on Grist with CPI’s kind permission.
Southern Company, the nation’s largest electric power generator, also had the largest force of lobbyists among the hundreds of businesses and interest groups that were seeking to influence the landmark climate change legislation that just passed the House.
With 63 lobbyists, the Atlanta-based energy giant had nearly twice as many climate lobbyists as any other company or organization, according to registration statements filed with the Senate Office of Public Records for the first quarter of 2009. (The second quarter filings won’t be available for a few weeks.) Eleven of Southern’s climate representatives were in-house, while the rest came from a dozen different lobbying shops.
Southern’s interest in the bill is not surprising, since more than 80 percent of the 200 million megawatt hours of electricity its plants generate annually is fired by fossil fuel — the main source of greenhouse gases. (A database comparing electric companies and emissions, based on 2... Read more