Old Energy Interests Try Hand at 'New Media' to Defeat Climate Bill

| Thu Oct. 22, 2009 9:00 AM EDT

There's another anti-climate bill advocacy group to watch out for: the Cost of Energy Information Project (CEIP). It's a new organization, but it's apparently organized and funded by a lot of the same old critics of climate-change policy.

CEIP is organized by Democratic lobbyist Morris Reid and Republican Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi, a climate change skeptic and former big-time dirty energy lobbyist who was a key player in the Bush administration's climate and energy policy. Republican lobbyists Ed Gillespie (also a former Bush adviser) and Ed Rogers helped form the organization. "The group plans to reach outside of the Beltway to engage citizens who, organizers insist, have been excluded from the lawmaking process," reports the Washington Times.

CEIP's website includes a "cap-and-trade cost calculator" that is built on a deeply flawed report on the House climate bill funded by the National Association of Manufacturers and the American Council for Capital Formation. The group is apparently "backed by energy-producing interests," according to the Washington Times, but there aren't any details available on what those interests might be.

I also have to note the headline on the Washington Times piece—"Group uses new media in climate-change debate"—and point you to CEIP's website, possibly the ugliest to launch since 1998. Not only that, their "cap-and-trade cost calculator" also manages to forget Washington, D.C., and their deft use of "new media" includes...Twitter and email to senators. Slick!

They're also competing for the CEIP acronym with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the California Emerging Infections Program. Good luck with that!