Koch Industries Climate Denial Front Group

Cato Institute

Page - March 31, 2010
$1,285,750 received from Koch foundations 2005-2011 [Total Koch foundation grants 1997-2011: $5,535,750]

The Cato Institute is focused on disputing the science behind global warming and questioning the rationale for taking action. Cato was founded by Ed Crane and Charles Koch, David Koch remains on Cato's Board of Directors.*

Cato is a member of the State Policy Network.

The organization's 2009 "Handbook for Policymakers" on global warming begins with the suggestions that Congress should "pass no legislation restricting emissions of carbon dioxide" and "inform the public about how little climate change would be prevented by proposed legislation."

Robert Bradley, an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, is also a founder and the CEO of the Institute for Energy Research.

In 2007 the Cato Foundation gave $120,000 to New Hope Environmental Services, an "advocacy science consulting firm" founded and run by long-time climate science denier Patrick Michaels, who uses New Hope to publish his World Climate Report, a sort of ongoing journal of denial of climate science. Michaels is also a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, which paid him $98,000 to write a book, The Satanic Gases, with fellow skeptic Robert Balling. Over the years, Michaels' work has been financed by a number of coal and polluter interests, including the Western Fuels Association, the Intermountain Rural Electric Association, and others.

In 2012, Cato's Patrick Michaels wrote an unofficial, scientifically-irrelevant "addendum" to the U.S. government's "Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States" assessment. The Cato report was designed to be almost identical to the U.S. government report (in aesthetics, layout and topical content) except for its notably unsubstantiated conclusions on climate science.

*In 2012, the Koch brothers sued the Cato Institute in order to exert more control over the organization. The lawsuit was dropped after an agreement was reached between the two parties, following months of highly-publicized attacks back and forth. David Koch remains on Cato's board of directors.


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