These days, going green costs a lot. There are the added costs of environmentally friendly technologies around your home, from the composting machine to the solar panels on the roof (which run around $24,000) to those aesthetically pleasing compact fluorescent light bulbs. Add to that the extra costs of buying your hybrid automobile, along with the extra maintenance costs to vehicles like that hot little Prius you just bought. Don’t forget to carry along those cute little canvas bags so you don’t have to use paper or plastic at the grocery store.
But at least when you go green you’re sticking it to those evil big businesses, right?
Not so fast, Captain Planet. The next time you hear some environmentalist railing against “big business,” keep this fact in mind: between lobbying, political donations, and advertising costs, the green movement has itself become a high-dollar operation.
The Daily Caller reported just this past week how much money environmental groups are laying down when it comes to political contributions and lobbying:
…environmental groups have spent more than $125 million on political causes, advertising campaigns and lobbying since 2009. Nearly $40 million of that was spent in California in 2010 alone, mostly to campaign against the Prop 23 ballot measure that would have postponed the implementation of greenhouse gas regulations.
During the 2009-2010 spending cycle, the League of Conservation Voters, Inc, a 501(c)4 organization, spent more than $4 million on political causes, according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings. The Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund spent nearly $2 million, and the Sierra Club spent just over $1 million, according to Internal Revenue Service (IRS) filings.
In total, during that time period, green groups spent more than $20 million dollars on 2010 political campaigns.
And in 2009, environmental groups spent nearly $22.5 million on lobbying. The top four spenders were the Nature Conservancy, Environmental Defense Fund, World Wildlife Fund and US Climate Action Partnership. Each spent $1 million or more.
These figures are comparable to the $148.8 million spent on contributions and lobbying by the six highest-contributing energy companies during roughly the same time frame. At the same time, bear in mind that the Left loves to paint lobbyists and “special interests” as bad, evil guys, yet these ecological organizations are precisely what they love to decry. The environmental lobby plays ball with the big boys in Washington. Heck, they are the big boys in our nation’s capital.