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The Real Climate Threat to our National Security

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National security, the Seattle oil rig, hypocrisy, and Greenpeace’s dirty money

by Ron Arnold

President Obama had it all wrong in his recent commencement address at the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut. He warned that climate change “deniers” endanger our national security – insisting that denial “undermines the readiness of our forces.”

In fact, climate change true believers are the real threat to our national security. That includes the notorious Seattle mob of Greenpeace “kayaktivists” who were recently paddling around Puget Sound, in kayaks made from petroleum, trying to stop Shell Oil’s Polar Pioneer Arctic drilling rig from making a layover at the Port of Seattle to gear up for Alaskan waters.

When thwarted by the Coast Guard’s 500-foot no-approach cordon, the Greenpeace canoe crowd left the harbor and took to the streets, where they blocked supplier access to the rig until city police dispersed them.

These angry picketers are the threat. They undermine America’s share of the Arctic Ocean’s estimated 30 percent of the world’s undiscovered natural gas and 13 percent of its oil reserves. That fuel could power the military as well as civilians.

How can slogan shouters endanger America’s national security when their targets are civilian oil rigs? Shell’s rigs will draw needed attention to the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas in an ocean filling with Russia’s growing Arctic supremacy. This month, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told a Senate appropriations committee hearing that the U.S. military Arctic defense policy is falling short.

The United States lacks ships able to operate in or near Arctic ice. We have only two medium icebreakers, one of which is nearly a decade past pull date. Russia has 40 big icecap-crunchers, 25 of them nuclear-powered, including one battleship-size beast ominously named 50 Years of Victory (but it takes tourists to the North Pole for 15-day cruises at $30,000 and up).

Our entire Alaskan Arctic coast has no U.S. military base, not one. Russian jets make nearly monthly incursions to the Air Defense Identification Zones off the coast of Alaska. Interceptors have to fly to the north coast from Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks (500 miles) or all the way from Elemendorf AFB in Anchorage (725 miles).

President Putin strategically laid claim to great swaths of Arctic oil and gas with deployed rigs. He has activated the Northern Fleet – two-thirds of the entire Russian Navy – as a strategic military command. And he has assigned a 6,000-soldier Russian Arctic warfare unit to the archipelago of Novaya Zemlya, with next generation fighter aircraft in addition to advanced S400 Triumf anti-aircraft systems. An Arctic military reconnaissance drone base 420 miles off mainland Alaska is operational.

In February, President Obama seemed to have adopted the Greenpeace strategy of roll over and play dead, when he stripped Alaska of vast stores of its oil and gas wealth, by reducing offshore drilling and declaring most of the 19.6-million-acre Arctic National Wildlife Refuge off limits to oil production. Yet his administration approved a conditional permit for Shell’s Arctic oil exploration.

The United States “may be 40 years behind” Russia, Alaska’s Senator Lisa Murkowski told Defense Secretary Carter. This spring, the U.S. Northern Command is supposed to release a report that is expected to militarize the existing 2013 National Strategy for the Arctic Region. However, according to the strategy, as reported by Foreign Policy Journal, “the Navy’s role will primarily be in support of search and rescue, law enforcement, and civil support operations.”

Shell’s oil rigs provide peaceful reasons for our warships and planes to patrol the Arctic in counterbalance to Russia. Carter told Murkowski, “The Arctic is going to be a major area of importance to the United States strategically and economically to the future.”

Research by Chicago-area Heartland Institute found a secret beneath Greenpeace’s anti-oil ruckus: it is funded by oil-drenched millions from investments in ExxonMobil, Chevron, PetroChina and dozens of other fossil fuel firms, ironically including shares of Royal Dutch Shell, owner of the rig docked in Seattle.

According to Foundation Search, the top Greenpeace donor is the leftist-run David and Lucile Packard Foundation, which paid them a total of $2,146,690 since 2000. The deceased electronics mogul’s foundation managers boast 2013 assets of $6.9 billion.

They have invested enormous working capital into Anadarko Petroleum, Apache Corporation, Arch Coal, Carrizo Oil and Gas, Chevron, ConocoPhilips, Devon Energy, Duke Energy, ExxonMobil, Marathon Oil, Occidental Petroleum, Phillips66, Questar, Tesoro, Valero Energy, World Fuel Service (a defendant in lawsuits over the 2013 oil train explosion in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec that killed 47 people), and many others. They pay Greenpeace from the profits.

Second-ranked Greenpeace donor is the leftist-funding Arcus Foundation, which gave the Rainbow Warrior security threats $1,055,651 since 2007. Established by ultra-green billionaire Jon Stryker, Arcus’ 2013 assets totaled $169,472,585 – with working capital injected into China Petroleum, ExxonMobil, PetroChina, Royal Dutch Shell and TransCanada (the “tar” sands pipeline company). It also paid Greenpeace from its fossil fuel profits.

The list of foundations giving oil profits to Greenpeace goes on and on – and Greenpeace goes on and on hypocritically taking those oil profits to undermine America’s real energy future.

This cabal could redeem itself instantly: they could just stop using any fossil fuels right now.

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Ron Arnold is Executive Vice President of the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise. This article originally appeared in The Daily Caller.

 

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About Author

PAUL DRIESSEN is senior policy adviser for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) and Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), public policy institutes that promote environmental stewardship, the enhancement of human health and welfare, and personal liberties and civil rights. He writes and speaks frequently on the environment, energy and economic development, malaria eradication, climate change, human rights, corporate social responsibility and sustainable development. His articles have appeared in newspapers and magazines and on news and opinion websites in the United States, Canada, Germany, Italy, Peru, Venezuela, South Africa, Uganda, Bangladesh and many other countries. Driessen’s book, Eco-Imperialism: Green Power - Black Death, documents the harm that restrictive environmental policies often have on poor people, especially in developing countries, by restricting their access to life-enhancing modern technologies. It is in its second US printing and has also been published in Argentina (Spanish), India (English), Germany (German) and Italy (Italian). He was editor for Energy Keepers - Energy Killers: The new civil rights battle, by CORE national chairman Roy Innis; Rules for Corporate Warriors: How to fight and survive attack group shakedowns, by Nick Nichols; and Creatures, Corals and Colors in North American Seas, by Ann Scarborough-Bull. His report, Responsible Progress in the Andes, examined ways that modern mining operations can bring jobs, infrastructure, and improved safety and pollution control practices to poor communities. Driessen’s studies and analyses have also appeared in Conserving the Environment (Doug Dupler, editor), Resurgent Diseases (Karen Miller, Editor) and Malnutrition (Margaret Haerens, editor), all part of the Thomson-Gale “Opposing Viewpoints” Series that is used in many high schools and colleges; Redefining Sovereignty: Will liberal democracies continue to determine their own laws and public policies, or yield these rights to transnational entities in search of universal order and justice? (Orin Judd, editor); and other publications. He played a lead role in the “Kill Malarial Mosquitoes Now” campaign, an international effort that restored the use of DDT to African and other malaria control programs, and served as an advisor to the film “3 Billion and Counting,” examining how environmentalist and EPA campaign against DDT had devastating impacts on families in poor developing countries. Paul received his BA in geology and field ecology from Lawrence University and a JD from the University of Denver College of Law, before embarking on a career that also included tenures with the United States Senate, U.S. Department of the Interior and an energy trade association. He has produced documentary films about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, immigration through Ellis Island, and marine habitats beneath offshore oil production platforms. Driessen is also a frequent guest on radio talk shows and college campuses, and at business and public policy forums. He participates in energy, health and environmental conferences, and was active in the Public Relations Society of America, where he served as Washington, DC chapter newsletter editor and in the Social Responsibility Section.

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