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Companies desert the climate deniosphere

Companies are leaving trade associations that deny human-induced global warming.

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In a letter earlier this year, Johnson & Johnson also expressed displeasure about the Chamber's tack, hinting that official Chamber views on climate issues were far more extreme than those held by its actual members. In an April letter [PDF], the pharmaceutical company said:

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We recognize that Chamber members have varying perspectives on climate change legislation. We would appreciate if statements made by the chamber would reflect the full range of views, especially those of chamber members advocating for congressional action.

A new Scopes monkey trial on climate aside, here's how the Chamber sums up its thinking on climate:

The long and the short of it is, preserving and protecting our economy and our environment for future generations is one of the top priorities of the U.S. Chamber. American business is the single largest investor and innovator in clean energy solutions and remains committed to propelling this nation to a prosperous and lower carbon future. We support sound policies that incentivize innovation and new business opportunities rather than the approach coming out of the House and the EPA which will strangle business with thousands of new regulation and stifle America's competitiveness.

The Chamber isn't the only industry association seeing desertions over the twin "regulation will kill business" and "climate change is a hoax" stances on climate issues.

Earlier this month, Alstom Power, a French manufacturer of power plant parts, left the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE). Last month, Duke Energy also left ACCCE, as did Alcoa, an aluminum company.

In August, Bonner & Associates, a lobbying firm hired by ACCCE, was caught sending forged letters to members of the House. But the companies say that didn't play into their decision to leave ACCCE.

In early September, Duke spokesman Tom Williams explained the company's decision to the National Journal: "As the debate evolved, it became clear that there were some influential members who would never support climate legislation no matter what."

Both Alstom and Duke supported the Waxman-Markey bill passed in the US House last June.

The exodus prompted one a blogger at Climate Progress to quip: "Will last company to leave the Chamber's boardroom please turn off the lights!"

Editor’s note: For more articles about the environment, see the Monitor’s main environment page, which offers information on many environment topics. Also, check out our Bright Green blog archive and our RSS feed.

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