The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Joe Smyth, Greenpeace Media Officer, 831-566-5647,

Greenpeace Climate Crime Unit Searches for Oil Billionaire at Smithsonian's David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins Opening


During the opening ceremony of the David H.
Koch Hall of Human Origins at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural
History, Greenpeace activists staged a climate crime scene
investigation in search of oil billionaire David Koch. Greenpeace's
Climate Crime Unit deployed green squad cars and emergency vehicles at
the Museum as activists distributed wanted posters exposing the Koch
brothers' climate crimes.
"While David Koch's oil wealth may
get his name on a museum exhibit, the Koch family legacy is one of
environmental crimes, lobbying to block clean energy, and funding
global warming denial front groups," said Kert Davies, Greenpeace
Research Director.

David Koch and his brother Charles Koch are the two principal
shareholders of Koch Industries, an oil supply and refining company
that is one of the largest private corporations in the US. Koch
Industries is among the biggest lobbying spenders in the oil industry
and Koch's PAC spent more on contributions to federal candidates since
the 2006 election cycle than any other oil-and-gas sector PAC. [1]

Koch Industries is also a major source of funding for climate denier
think tanks and organizations, including Americans for Prosperity,
which David Koch founded. According to the Washington Post, next week
AFP will launch another "Hot Air Tour" aimed at opposing climate and
clean energy policy. [2]

"It's a wonder the Smithsonian didn't learn a lesson on vetting its
funders from the 2007 controversy over oil industry funding of the
oceans exhibit hall. Once again it is a shame to see this venerable
Museum's name tainted by its sources of funding," said Davies, "David
Koch is a multimillion dollar donor to groups that vend misinformation
about climate science, so it's concerning that the Smithsonian would
stamp his name on an exhibit that aims, in part, to educate people
about the impacts of climate change on humanity."

In 2007, Smithsonian Regents including Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont
opposed an effort by the American Petroleum Institute to fund the
Smithsonian's Ocean Hall amid concerns that accepting oil money would
taint the exhibit. [3]

Greenpeace is a global, independent campaigning organization that uses peaceful protest and creative communication to expose global environmental problems and promote solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future.

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