Disturbing news about just how far Big Oil will go for profits:
Think Progress’s Josh Dorner released an analysis of recent lobbying disclosure documents filed by the Big Oil companies that outlines the industry’s lobbying of Congress and the administration on the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act in order to protect and pad their already record-setting profits.
Coming on the heels of recent reports about BP’s alleged role in seeking the release of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the convicted bomber of Pan Am flight 103, in order to score more profits through oil concessions in Libya, this news is another startling example of how far Big Oil will go for profits — even if it means putting national security, indeed global security, at risk.
This news came on the same day the United States Senate announced it would not take up a comprehensive clean energy and climate bill, sentencing America to the continued status quo of dependence on oil that helps our enemies, hurts our economy and threatens our national security.
From Think Progress:
Big Oil’s interest in weakening the law is obvious. Among other things, the new law, signed by President Obama on July 1, imposes significant new sanctions on individuals and corporations “that directly and significantly contribute to Iran’s ability to develop petroleum resources” and that sell more than $200,000 in fuel or other refined petroleum products to Iran. The new sanctions are important because “although Iran is the second-largest oil producer in the world, it lacks refining capacity and relies on foreign suppliers for nearly 5 million gallons of gasoline a day.” In addition, the country’s energy industry is “a huge source of revenue for the Iranian government and a stronghold of the increasingly powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps,” which “oversees Iran’s nuclear and missile programs.”
Why should we be surprised? Maybe we shouldn’t be. Earlier this year a New York Times investigation revealed that many Big Oil companies are among American businesses doing business with Iran while contracting and receiving $107 billion in taxpayer-funded contracts and subsidies from the United States.
Proving how out of touch Big Oil is, the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Act was overwhelmingly supported in Congress, 412-12 in the House and 99-0 in the Senate, even in the current hyper-partisan environment in Washington.
Now Congress should shake Big Oil’s influence and pass a comprehensive energy and climate plan that will reduce our dependence on oil, create new American jobs and curb harmful carbon pollution.