Fossil fuel lobby is defined as a group of paid representatives of fossil fuel such as electric utilities, gas, oil and even coal. Fossil fuel lobby usually influences government policy concerning fuel regulation. Lobbyists operate in shadows and their influence increases when to go unnoticed by the public. Lobbyists are paid to persuade the government to make decisions that favor the business owners of the fossil fuel.
Setting the agenda in conversation with the government
Fossil fuel lobbyists influence the government decisions in the fossil fuel business in various ways. First, they control the ground of the debate. By owning most of the terms of the debate, lobbyists steers conversations away from the ones that they consider not easy to win. Most their focus is how to push the government to consider their interests.
Secondly, lobbyists know how to use the media to favor them. They would craft messages and knows when to use it in their favor and when not to use it. These are done to calm the public anger in case their trick gets into public attention. Lobbyists also engineer a following because corporate alone cannot make their case alone to the government and therefore they usually seek mass voices to help them push their agenda with the government. There are those firms in the United Kingdom that specializes in mobilizing voices on behalf of corporate.
For example in 2011, thirty lobbyists signed a letter to the FT supporting HS2, 100. Also, lobbyists usually buy credibility because they are not trusted by the public as a source of information. Therefore, they would have to hire independent, authentic experts that can carry the message for them. This means that corporate would have an agenda to pass a particular message across, but because they are sure that the public would not trust this information when it originates from them, they would hire people whose credibility as viewed by the public are not questionable.
Most of the lobbyists in the fossil fuel in the United States of America and the United Kingdom sway politicians by moving the blocks of voters to align with their interest. They are required to register with the office of the registrar of a lobbyist any time they intend to lobby support for a particular interest of a specific company. These groups are also known for sponsoring think-tanks to help them formulate schemes that would ensure that their agenda succeeds. Some of the think-tanks would provide their clients with a lobbying package such as media friendly reports as well as an ear-time with politicians.
Furthermore, corporate usually consult their critics when they are involved in ire of local communities. This would help them to understand their undoing so that they can perfect the areas of their weakness. The lobbyist also works to neutral the opposition or those who are against their ideas. They would employ various tactics to sway the government to listen to them but not their opposition. Moreover, they have access to politicians so that they can always have a way to cook a deal in the kitchen with them.
Fossil fuel companies fund to Congress; industry influence in the United States of America
It is considered legal and way of business to lobby for the support of fossil fuel company policies that would best fit the interest of those who owns such companies. In the United States Oil and Gas Company uses the money to fund campaigns of various politicians including presidential candidates so that when they took over power, they would favor their businesses or make policies that are in line with their interests. The influence of the lobbyist is not easy to be quantified, but it has more influence in political decisions. Most people view the influence of the fossil fuel in politics as the major barriers to the environment conservation and the path to clean energy.
Fossil fuel lobbying contributes to major scandals
Fossil fuel can be attributed to various scandals in the UK and the US. In the year 2013, Ocean Connect made about seven million dollars by selling fake biofuel. This scandal was attributed to political connections and dirty among the insiders of the government. Political connections were the case, and Ocean Connect won the case. In such situations, it can be deduced that the company lobbied politicians who sought the help of the judges and lawyers to help the case to end and be ruled by them.
Impact of fossil fuel lobby on climate change politics
Fossil fuel lobbyist is funding politician not to vote for the bills that are set for the actions that are intended to reduce the global warming. According to reports, recently more than 55 percent of Republican made statements that suggest that they would not support the climate change policy. This happens because the climate change policy would reduce the business of the fossil fuel as it advocates for the use of green energy such as solar power. Therefore to protect their interest, the lobbyists aims to support the politicians by funding some their projects as well as their campaigns so that they vote no to then climate change bill. In return, the global warming becomes a menace that its solution is far from reach.
They pass their agenda by convincing politicians to give various misinformation about the climate change and thus deceive the public on the reality of the climate change and the policy that aims to curb it. The business owners in the fossil fuel industry are using a lot of millions of dollars to wage propaganda campaign so that the policy of climate change is downplayed by politicians. Much of these dollars have been used to convince researchers to give a view on climate change that is for their interest. Some of the science disinformation campaigns that were funded by the fossil fuel lobby include the following;
1. Global climate coalition and national coal association
This occurred in the 1990s when the energy and other fuel companies blocked climate change legislation through the bodies such as Global Climate Coalition. This organization spent about thirteen million dollars on anti-Kyoto campaigns and advertisements that aim to discredit climate change legislation. Also, it used 63 million dollars to sway politicians to support its agenda. This made the laws designed to reduce global warming not to go through and thus hindering climate change policy.
2. American Petroleum Institute
American Petroleum Institute also funded a separate campaign that included many of its members such the National Coal Association. It is estimated that it used more than 650,000 US dollars on the global warming issue between 1992 and 1993. It paid also paid a public relation firm about 1.8 million dollars to facilitate a computer-driven campaign to discredit the tax proposed by the fossil fuel industry. They also used think tanks corporate such as Cato as well as the Competitive Enterprise Institute to defeat the scientific report on the climate change issues. Like, GCC, American Petrol Institute has a significant influence on the climate change legislation at the highest level of government. This has made it difficult for any government to pass climate change legislation.
In summary, the influence of fuel lobbying has resulted in the various issues around the world especially in the United Kingdom and the USA. Fossil fuel lobbying has caused various scandals that the government found difficult to deals with and at the same time has led to the use of military intervention in various oil producing countries where the lobbyists have used the government to protect their interest in those countries with an agreement to either support the government achieve some of its pledges but also for election supports. Because they contribute more money to companies, they would have politicians on their side in doing businesses, and this helps them cover various scandals. The influence of fossil fuel lobbyists can also be seen in difficulties the government has in implementing green energy policies that would protect the environment because this interferes with their business.