Sunday, September 27, 2009

Greening the Chamber: the current Board of Directors is a challenge

John Mashey suggests reviewing the US Chamber's Board of Directors for likely willingness to change their do-nothing approach to climate change.* Some of the members are below:

  • President and CEO Thomas Donahue: as the guy in charge, I assume he's personally responsible for the know-nothing approach, a Lee Raymond type who won't change except under threat to his career, if then. Also, former president of the trucking industry association.
  • Chair Robert Milligan: runs an "animal and meat protein processing company" in the Midwest. Not likely receptive to the problems of climate change to meat use and the fertilizer intensive agriculture that supports it.
  • Donald Shepard: an insurance guy - a possible realist? Unfortunately his background is life and pension insurance, but maybe he's been infected with some understanding of what property insurers think of reality.
  • Steve Van Andel: from Amway, which isn't a problem, but also very Michigan-oriented, which could be.

So, not very encouraging from the first glance. Not too surprising either - there had to be institutional reasons for taking such an awful stance. In addition, I know personally that real estate agent associations are very active at local chambers and often take great exception to land use controls, so I could see the same attitude reaching the national level.

On the other hand, we do have industries that have good reason to support addressing climate change, as well as normal industries that want a planet they can continue to do business on, so I think there are still prospects for change.

*I previously labelled the Chamber's approach as denialist, but instead of actually denying human-caused warming, the US Chamber just doesn't want to take serious steps to address it, either under the Clean Air Act or through current proposed legislation.

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