Observable and direct influence

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To assess the nature and extent of the influence of the fossil fuel lobbies over the emerging regime to confront climate change, and to draw out conclusions about stages in the regime's history when influence has been heightened or reduced, a three-stage breakdown of the regime process will be employed, consistent with other chapters in the book: agenda-setting, negotiation-bargaining and implementation.

16 Patrick Balling has received over $200,000 from coal and oil interests for his climate research (Ozone Action 1997). Similarly an economic model developed by Charles River Associates and funded by the American Petroleum Institute was referred to widely in the media and policy discourse within the US (ibid.).

17 Greenpeace International (1998) estimates that between 1991 and 1996 the oil and gas sector donated $53.4 million to US election candidates and their political parties

18 Interviews with Walcott, Mulligan and Reinstein, 18 July 1996.


Agenda-setting refers to the initial process of policy initiation in response to a perceived problem. It is at this stage that the scope of appropriate action is decided upon, often at the national level in the first instance. Governments seek the opinions and expertise of interested parties at the very start of the policy process, when tentative proposals are being formulated.19 In a formal sense, this takes place through participation in policy committees.20 Santaholma (1995:7) notes that 'consultations with business have been an integral part of most national policy processes' in relation to climate change.

Privileged access by lobbyists to government in the earliest stages of policy development can be critical in determining the shape of the policy that emerges. Some of the organisations involved in lobbying on global warming, such as the Union of Industrial Employers' Confederations (UNICE) in Europe, are 'invariably consulted by the Commission almost as a matter of right' (Collie 1993:225).21 It is often easier for lobbyists to influence climate policy through pressure on their national government, given that they are dealing with just one government, with which they are more likely to have an established relationship (Porter and Brown 1996). National policy processes often offer more scope for participation. As John Shlaes of the Global Climate Coalition (GCC) notes, 'In the US we have dozens of hearings on each issue, here at the UN you don't have those opportunities for representation in the discussion'.22 Lobbyists also recognise that influencing the scope of policy at the national level is an effective way of shaping the international agenda23 (Santaholma 1995). As Christophe Bourillon (formerly) of the World Coal Institute (WCI) notes, 'most of the work has to be done on a national level before the negotiations, because governments go to New York or Geneva with a brief'.24

Negotiating positions begin to be formulated prior to the negotiation process, and it is here - during the earliest stages of policy development, when the scope of action is considered - that industry groups are able to exert a great deal of influence. The US provides an example. By 1989 the US delegation had already been instructed about their objectives for the UNCED process: a weak framework convention, free

19 See for example ENDS (1992d) and Porter and Brown (1996) for more on the way in which the UK Department of Trade and Industry actively encouraged industry to express its concerns about the proposed European carbon tax. A more recent example is the June 1995 European Conference of Ministers of Transport, which held close consultations with the international automobile manufacturing industry in order to produce a joint declaration on the reduction of CO2 emissions from vehicles (Morand-Francis 1995; Acid News 1995).

20 Questionnaires from Anderson (1996) and Bennett (1996).

21 Collie (1993:218) shows how UNICE can 'virtually guarantee access on any issues ofrelevance to European industry'.

22 Interview with John Shlaes, 18 July 1996.

Interview with Bourillon, 22 June 1995.

24 Ibid.

of proposals that would reduce the use of fossil fuels (Hatch 1993:13). This is borne out by a leaked 'Talking Points' memo circulated to US negotiators outlining which issues to focus attention upon and which to deflect attention away from.25 The wording of the memo suggests that the negotiating space available to the US had been predetermined by a concern not to damage the interests of the fossil fuel industries. It encouraged delegates to focus on the many remaining scientific uncertainties and ambiguities in relation to cost; a position that, as Hildyard (1993:29) points out, 'faithfully reflected the position of the oil industry'. Evidence of this influence led NGO observers to note that, while industry groups do engage in formal lobbying during negotiations, 'for the most part they can get what they want in private, months before the bell rings to call delegates into the negotiating sessions' (ECO, issue 5, Geneva 1991).

Influence over the scope of the agenda depends in part upon the ability of lobbyists to locate sympathetic individuals in government administrations who will articulate their interests in policy debates.26 Access for the coal and other lobbies to the US administration was made easier, for example, by the presence of White House Chief of Staff and greenhouse sceptic John Sununu, who was in a position to decide which views on the costs of abatement action President Bush should be exposed to.27 Acting on behalf of powerful departments within the administration - such as the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) - Sununu was able to gut legislation that threatened fossil fuel interests.28 Hence when the Department of Energy revealed its national energy strategy in February 1991, as a key part of the US administration's climate change policy, a number of major proposals, including increased corporate average fuel efficiency standards (CAFE) and energy conservation, had been removed (Hatch 1993). Instead the strategy included a proposal to allow increased oil and gas production in Alaska (Eikeland 1993b:989). There was little mention in the strategy of coal and oil as such, apart from research and development provisions on clean coal technology (which the Clean Coal Technology Coalition had lobbied for and which passed through Congress without debate or change), and tax relief for independent petroleum producers (Eikeland 1993b:992; Hatch 1993). All provisions directly relating to action on climate change met a veto threat and were 'extensively modified' in the final bill (Eikeland 1993b:993). Hatch (1993:19) refers to the 'intense efforts of industry', particularly the coal, oil and car industries, when explaining the assault on the strategy. A broad alliance consisting of the National Coal Association

25 The 'Talking Points' memo (dated 17 April 1990) is reproduced in ECO, issue 7, Geneva 1990.

26 Interview with Mulligan, 18 July 1996.

27 Similarly, John Dingell, chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee and described as one of the 'most powerful figures in congress' mobilised 'unyielding opposition' to the passage of any energy bill that threatened the interests he represented (Hatch 1993:21). Richard Darman, director of the Office of Management and Budget, was also a key opponent of any international commitments on global warming (ibid.)

28 For more on Sununu's role in vetoing proposals for greater action on global warming on behalf of the Office of Management and Budget, the Council of Economic Advisers and the Treasury, particularly in relation to the 1992 Congress Energy Policy Act, see Eikeland (1993a).

(NCA), the GCC29 and the Climate Council successfully resisted all proposals designed to stabilise or reduce CO2 emissions (ibid.). An indication of the closeness of the relationship that the lobbies were able to nurture with the White House chief of staff was the ECO headline announcing Sununu's resignation: 'Sununu resigns... Coal lobby in mourning' (ECO, issue 1, Geneva 1991).

The lobbies also had a sympathetic ally in President Bush, who made it clear he would veto any bill that sought to impose new taxes or bar new oil and gas production (Eikeland 1993a:5; Hatch 1993). Nevertheless the case of the US illustrates how the lobbies have to try to influence governments in different ways,30 and that they enjoy better relations with some government administrations than others. Hence the influence of the lobbies in the US may be said to have has declined slightly under Clinton's leadership compared with the degree of access they enjoyed under the Bush administration.31

The EU proposal for a community-wide carbon tax perhaps provides the clearest example of the strength of the influence of fossil fuel lobbies in vetoing climate policy instruments that threaten their interests.32 The prospect of the tax 'spurred the massed ranks of Europe's industrialists to mount what is probably their most powerful offensive against an EC proposal' (Economist 1992a; ENDS Report 1992c).33 Carlo Ripa di Meana, EU Environment Commissioner at the time, described the lobbying as a 'violent assault'; an indication of the vigour with which the industries pursued their demands (quoted in Sebenius 1994:294). It is clear that the arguments forwarded by industry featured highly in policy-makers' minds during the formulation of the tax proposal. Philip Dykins of the Department of the Environments' Global Atmosphere Division and representative of the UK government at the climate negotiations, stated that 'we're very concerned about the possible impacts of a carbon tax on industry ... it's a competitive disadvantage for industry, that's a big consideration'.34 Lobbying by the UK coal industry against the tax was successful in bringing on side the House of Lords EU Committee, which produced a critical report on the effect the tax would have on the competitiveness of the coal industry (Environment Business 1992a). The committee was headed by Lord Ezra, a former chairman of British Coal (ibid.).

29 The GCC describes itself as 'the leading business voice on climate change'. It is a organisation of over fifty-five business trade associations and companies, including the American Petroleum Institute, the US Chamber of Commerce, Du Pont, Dow, Exxon, Texaco, Chevron, Mobil and a number of car (General Motors, Chrysler) and road construction companies. The coalition was established in 1989. Brown (1996a) describes the GCC as 'the giant of the lobbying business'.

30 Interviews with Reinstein and Walcott, 18 July 1996.

Interview with Reinstein, 18 July 1996.

32 For a useful collection ofposition papers from the leading industrial actors on the carbon tax issue see Forum Europe (1992), Hampson (1992) and UNICE (1994).

33 As The Economist (1992a) also wrote at the time, 'The proposed carbon tax has been subject to the most ferocious lobbying ever seen in Brussels'.

34 Interview with Dykins, 25 February 1994.

Despite the fact that EC commissioners were told that in order for the community to meet its goal of stabilising emissions at 1990 levels by the end of the decade, a US$18 a barrel tax would be necessary, they concluded that the tax was 'not politically realistic' (quoted in ECO, issue 2, Nairobi 1991). The development of the EU carbon tax into a conditional proposal,35 dependent for its approval on similar actions being adopted by industrial competitors in the US and Japan, and from which energy-intensive industries were in any case exempt, provides clear evidence of the impact of the fossil fuel lobbies on the course of international climate politics. Skjaerseth (1994:31) argues that 'inclusion of the principle of conditionality must be seen in the light of increasing lobby activity from business interests'. For some observers, these significant caveats to the proposal revealed a desire on the part of governments to 'limit damage to oil companies which argue the tax would handicap them in international markets' (Gribben 1992). The Commission responded to the concern of the oil industry, vocalised for the most part through the European Petroleum Industry Association (EUROPIA), by demanding that officials prove that the tax would be the most economically efficient way ofmeeting the stabilisation target (Environment Business 1991). The tax proposal ended up not even as a draft directive, but as a recommendation for legislation, with each EU member deciding individually whether or not to implement it (ECOAL 15 1995; Environment Business 1991b:5). Lobbyists were able to erode the consensus among EU member states in favour of a binding directive (Guardian 1992a; Palmer 1992:92). There is no doubt about the cause: 'The commission significantly watered down Mr Di Meana's original proposals following heavy pressure from industry groups throughout the EC' (Guardian 1992a; ENDS Report 1992d). Indeed 'agreement on the proposal only became possible after fervent lobbying by European industry groups produced a much watered down version of the energy tax than the commission originally wanted' (Environment Business 1991b).

Hence it was not just a question of the lobbies influencing the course of the proposal once laid out, it was a question of pre-empting its contents and therefore helping to set the agenda. Sebenius notes that, 'Largely as a result of industry opposition, before the carbon tax was even proposed as a directive to the council of ministers, both energy-intensive industries and major exporters were pre-emptively exempted from the tax' (Sebenius 1994:294, emphasis added). The fate of the proposal to tax carbon vividly demonstrates the ability of the fossil fuel lobbies to set the boundaries for discussion of climate change strategies.

Industry groups can also pre-empt, and render untenable, particular negotiating positions by threatening to relocate their business if a government pursues a particular line. The Dutch energy industry's opposition to the Dutch government's proposal to introduce a unilateral energy levy, took the form of a threat to transfer new investments abroad if the government developed its plans further (ENDS Report 1992c; Environment Business 1992d). These industries also refused to participate in

35 Australia and Japan have also adopted an emission reduction target that is conditional on their major trading partners adopting a similar target (Morand-Francis 1995).

environmental planning discussions with the government unless the latter dropped its proposal to double energy taxes (Environment Business 1991e).36 The government subsequently postponed its decision on the levy until completion of the distant EU-wide proposal (Environment Business 1992b). Hence the proposal was effectively terminated at birth by protests from industry (Environment Business 1991b, 1992d, 1992e).

The Byrd Resolution (Senate Resolution 98), sponsored by Republican senators on behalf of the GCC, effectively tied the hands of the US negotiators at Kyoto by declaring that the (Republican-dominated) Senate would not ratify any agreement emerging from the conference that did not explicitly include reduction commitments for LDCs. The tactic was successful in restricting the degree of negotiating space available to the US delegation at the Kyoto meeting in agreeing new targets.

Internalisation of the concerns of the fossil fuel lobbies by leading government officials will therefore delineate the possibilities for future action at the international level. Governments take with them to the UN negotiating chambers a sense of what agreements will be acceptable to influential domestic constituencies, and which proposals are likely to provoke the sort of furore already witnessed at the national level.


The direct influence of the fossil fuel lobbies upon states once international negotiations have commenced may be thought to be minimal, given that the scope for negotiating compromises and concessions is to some degree determined beforehand, leading some observers to claim that the power of industry lobbies during international negotiations is slight.37 The underlying assumption is that once policy has shifted to the negotiating halls of the UN, further resolution of the issue is solely the domain of those government officials and diplomats whose job it is to draft appropriate texts. The types of influence that business groups are able to exert at the national level are far less effective at the international level, given that international organisations are more insulated from the pressure lobby groups can bring to bear in the domestic context (Levy and Egan 1998).38 There were, moreover, few opportunities for industry representatives to speak on the floor of INC plenary sessions (Faulkner 1994).

However, the new openness during the UNCED negotiations meant that representatives from industry were included as full members of several national delegations (Chatterjee and Finger 1994; Faulkner 1994). In the case of the US, it was not just a question of industry representatives being conferred access to government.

36 Among those making the threat were oil and chemical companies such as Shell, Akzo, DSM and Dow.

37 Interview with Robinson, 15 July 1994. As the environmental NGO newsletter ECO claimed, 'The professional lobbyists of the coal, oil and car industries are here of course in Geneva. But in truth their role, like that of the environmental groups, is now minimal' (ECO, issue 1, Geneva 1990).

38 Though channels of influence such as social networks, media advertising and campaign contributions are not available at the international level, spillover effects should not be underestimated.

Highly placed officials from the Bush administration also appeared on industrial lobbying delegations at INC meetings (Nilsson and Pitt 1994:141). Indeed Robert Reinstein, former head of the US delegation to the climate negotiations under President Bush, has attended recent rounds of climate negotiations as a representative of the Canadian Electricity Association. John Schlaes, director of the GCC, also held a senior position in the executive office of the White House as director of communications under John Sununu (Levy and Egan 1998), and on leaving her post as senior director for Global Environmental Affairs at the National Security Council, Eileen Clausen took up a post with the International Climate Change Partnership (ICCP). Hence the 'revolving door' between the corporate and government worlds is also manifested at the international level.

Moreover the drafting process and the need to develop compromises acceptable to all parties, creates fresh opportunities for policy shifts and changes in direction. Industrial lobbyists attend negotiations in order to influence these changes. As former WCI lobbyist Christophe Bourillon says, 'We are there for the last minute drafting and changes. When states invite you to help them draft something you don't say no'.39 William Mulligan of the GCC says of the US delegation, 'they will turn to us to find out what kind of implications there are for the private sector of any new initiative'.40 This reinforces the point that industry groups are regarded as being able to provide governments with a sense of whether particular policy proposals are realistic or feasible in an economic sense.41 This process of referral allows the lobbyists further scope to determine the range of options under consideration. In the words of Tito Sale of the World Energy Council, 'Our role is to advise governments about their industrial and technological flexibilities.'42 The leverage provided by these forms of consultations helps to explain why, for Robert Anderson of the American Petroleum Institute, contact with diplomats at international negotiations is the most effective channel of influence available to corporate lobbyists.43

One other means of exerting influence at this stage of the policy process, which lobbyists are open about using, is to remind delegations that whatever they agree in the negotiating halls will have to pass through national legislatures that may be hostile to the proposals.44 The GCC and Climate Council for example, sought to restrain further actions, circulating letters expressing concern by members of the US Congress and Senate about the course being pursued by the US delegation at the COP2 negotiations. Press conferences were also held at Kyoto and subsequently at COP4 in Buenos Aires to reiterate the veto threat implied by the Byrd Resolution (see above) in order to maintain pressure on the US delegation not to

39 Interview with Bourillon, 22 June 1995.

40 Interview with Mulligan, 18 July 1996.

41 Interview with Walcott, 18 July 1996.

42 Interview with Sale, 18 July 1996, emphasis added.

Questionnaire from Anderson (1996).

44 Interviews with Reinstein and Schlaes, 18July 1996.

accept accords without commitments from non-Annex 1 parties. In this way the lobbies are able to undermine the prospects of policy options that they consider to be too costly or unrealistic, by bringing domestic political pressures to bear in international arenas.

Lobbyists also adopt new strategies to influence the negotiations: grouping together45 and forming alliances with governments. One channel of influence for lobbies during the negotiations has been the formation of coalitions with what might be termed 'laggard' or 'veto' states (Porter and Brown 1991): those states whose principal goal in the negotiations is to thwart action on issues they consider to be contrary to their interests. The fossil fuel lobbies have been able to advance their minimal action agenda during the negotiations, through support for the negotiating position of oil exporting states such as Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) bloc (Acid News 1994b; Porter and Brown 1996). Don Pearlman of the Climate Council and John Schlaes of the GCC were reported to have drafted a number of US-Saudi amendments designed to stall negotiations on a protocol to the convention (ECO, issue 8, New York 1993). For instance the proposal by Saudi Arabia that protocols to the convention should be adopted by three-quarters of the parties instead of the present two-thirds was 'widely believed to have been drafted by US fossil fuel lobby interests' (ECO, issue 3, New York 1994). This delaying tactic was said to have had 'Pearlman's fingerprints all over it' (Farley 1997). Sathiah Renji, head of the Malaysian delegation at the climate talks, said of Pearlman, 'He has tremendous influence and countries depend on him. I've seen fossil fuel producers consult with him before making a decision' (Farley 1997). Renji recounts an incident in which a Middle Eastern delegate asked for a vote at a closed meeting to be delayed while he went to the bathroom. The chair sent an escort along and found Pearlman waiting outside (ibid.). Indeed it was the lobbying antics of Don Pearlman at INC 11 that resulted in NGOs being banned from the floor during the negotiating sessions. Pearlman 'was standing there writing out interventions on pieces of paper that his runners were then taking to his client states in such a blatant way that it led to all the NGOs being banned'.46 The ties run both ways however, and Grubb et al. (1999) argue that much of the negotiating strength of the OPEC group in the climate negotiations derives from their links with US-based industries.

Alignment with 'veto state' partners ensured the deletion of key sections of draft proposals of what eventually became the Climate Convention. For example reference to the Toronto target of a 20 percent reduction in CO2 emissions by the

45 The need to group together to have more impact at the international level provided the impetus for the creation of the World Industry Council for the Environment (WICE) after UNCED in 1992, an amalgamation of the lobbying efforts of the ICC and BCSD. The BCSD and WICE were merged early in 1995 to form the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, which is a coalition of120 companies drawn from 35 countries with a network of national and regional business councils.

46 Interview with Sieghart, 17 July 1996. The Climate Council, which Pearlman heads, is said to have greater influence with the OPEC states, while the GCC has closer relations with the JUSCANZ grouping (Levy and Egan 1998).

year 2005 in a draft declaration at the Second World Climate Conference in 1990 was removed after lobbying by the US, the former Soviet Union and Saudi Arabia, purportedly on behalf of their oil lobbies (ECO, issue 7, Geneva 1990). As Alden Meyer noted at the time, 'The US ... is working with the fossil fuel industries to block any meaningful action by the ministers' (ECO, issue 7, Geneva 1990). For Doyle (1992a), the fact that the convention contains no binding commitments to act, illustrates that 'the industry lobby won the day'. Rumours during the negotiations that the US administration might drop its resistance to mandated reductions were dispelled after coal and other lobbyists 'intervened forcefully' to check a policy shift in that direction (Dawson 1992).47 Governments' concerns for the energy industries explicitly worked their way into the text of the convention. Article 4 (part 10) on commitments provides an exemption to countries whose economies are 'highly dependent' on producing or consuming fossil fuels (UNFCCC 1992:4(10), 4(8)). The WCI and other groups were instrumental in the drafting of this proposal, in collaboration with Australia and the OPEC group.48

At the First Conference of the Parties to the Climate Convention (COP1) in Berlin, the International Climate Change Partnership (ICCP),49 a group of corporate lobbyists representing a number of fossil fuel interests, provided the US delegation with a marked-up version of a draft document that formed the basis of the final conference document (Fay and Stirpe 1995). Many of the concerns articulated by the ICCP were replicated virtually verbatim in the final conference text. Even the ICCP's preferred language was adopted. The ICCP's preference for reference only to 'a legal instrument', so as not to privilege discussion of a protocol, was included in the preamble of the final conference text.

The lobby was also successful in removing from paragraph 2(e) of a draft conference text mention of'common measures', so as to privilege domestic policy options over which the ICCP would be able to exert more influence. Perhaps more interesting still is the way in which the US Senate's Committee on Energy and Natural Resources responded to the outcome of COP1. The committee criticised the conference in terms that resonated exactly with the criticisms levelled by the GCC (1995a).50 This is perhaps less surprising when it is recalled that 60 percent of the

47 According to an ECO editorial, 'The Climate Council and the Global Climate Coalition have opposed any commitment even to limit emissions, arguing for a purely procedural convention ... they have largely gotten their way' (ECO, issue 8, New York 1992).

48 Interview with Bourillon, 22 June 1995.

49 The ICCP, established in 1991, describes itself as a 'diverse industry organisation dedicated to responsible participation in the international and domestic global climate change policy process' (ICCP brochure undated). Members include DuPont, General Electric, BP and Enron. The group claims to represent the 'middle ground' in the debate (Levy 1997).

See the press release of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (1995) and The Global Climate Coalition's press briefing (Shlaes 1995). A similar pattern of events emerged at COP2, where the US Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources published a press release and the US Senate and Congress sent letters to the US President and Secretary of State, which drew on statistics and arguments identical to those contained in the Global Climate Coalition's press briefings released shortly before this (Murkoweski 1996; US Senate 1996).

committee were from coal states, 'with oil and gas amply represented as well' (Hatch 1993:20). ICCP executive-director Kevin Fay, was able to conclude from COP1 that, 'The parties met the criteria for success from our perspective' (ICCP 1995a).

It was also apparent at COP1 that what Grubb (1995a:81) refers to as a 'hardcore' of states, resisting further action and insisting on commitments for developing countries, was emerging in the form of the US and Australia, which perhaps uncoinciden-tally also had 'the biggest and most powerful domestic fossil fuel (particularly coal) industries' (ibid.). The fossil fuel lobbies, dominated by the concerns of the US coal and oil industries, 'rushed to the negotiating floor' at the final preparatory meeting for COP1 (February 1995) when it looked as though agreement would be reached on the inadequacy of existing commitments (ibid.:182). The result was that 'key exporter governments renewed their objections apparently at the behest of industry lobbyists' (ibid.).

Even in the run-up to the Kyoto agreement, which ended up going against the interests of the fossil lobbies in many respects, 'US industry and in particular the electricity sector . . . lobbied strenuously against early commitments. Desperate to mollify at least some of the domestic opposition, the administration let it be understood that it would not accept any emissions reductions binding before 2010 (Grubb et al. 1999). On the issue of which gases to include in the Kyoto Protocol, Greenpeace claimed that 'an agreement between the Dutch government and its powerful chemical industry was at the root of EU opposition to including the trace industrial gases (HFCs, PFCs and SF6) at all' (cited in Grubb et al. 1999).

Whilst it is difficult to ascertain how far states are pushed by the lobbies, or the extent to which lobbying by industry groups merely serves to support conservative negotiating positions, it is clear that the lobbies push as well as support sympathetic negotiating positions. It is plausible to argue, for example, that the US stance was easier to sustain with the active support of such powerful domestic constituencies, convincing the negotiating delegation that the line they were taking would be popular and tenable 'back home', and at the same time helping to undermine the position of advocates of action. More than that, John Gummer, former secretary of state for the environment in the UK, argues that the fossil fuel lobbyists and the sceptics in the scientific community whose work they fund, 'make respectable some of the wishes of the politicians to avoid difficult issues' (quoted in Ghazi 1997).

The PR firms representing the companies continually seek out for new allies, and when it became clear that Australia would be a willing veto state in the run-up to the Kyoto meeting, major US PR firms (such as Edelmans, Burston-Marsteller, and Hill and Knowlton) increased their presence in Australia by teaming up with the mining industry (Gallon Environment Letter 2(16) 1998). According to the Guardian, 'Perhaps nowhere has the fossil fuel industry been more successful than in Australia, where the government has presented industry lobby interests as synonymous with the national interest' (Beder, Brown and Vidal 1997:4). The Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (ABARE), a government-funded economic forecasting agency that liases closely with Australia's Western Mining Corporation, the US Mining Association, Ford Motors and the American

Petroleum Institute, predicted huge costs in jobs and income if the emission reduction targets were met (ibid.). The ABARE-sponsored model was used to support the Australian government's negotiating position that the stabilisation goal of the convention would only be achievable if non-OECD parties accepted commitments. Corporations willing to pay $50,000 could buy a seat on the ABARE steering committee (ibid.). In return, as ABARE's promotional publicity for sponsors states, 'By becoming a member of the consortium, you will have an influence on the direction of the model development' (Burton and Rampton 1998). As a result ABARE receives $500,000 a year (80 percent of its overall costs) from companies such as Mobil Oil, Exxon, Texaco and Statoil (ibid.). Hence when US industry lobbies hook up with sympathetic Australian government departments, a strategic alliance is formed that can simultaneously bolster the government's negotiating position and extend the lobbies' influence in new directions.

The lobbies have also been able to create conflict between countries within international fora by playing them off against each other at the national level. A Charles Rivers Associates (CRA) economic forecasting model, funded by the American Petroleum Institute, has been used to support the argument of the US administration that action should not be taken unless LDCs also take action, and at the same time to persuade LDCs that CO2 reduction strategies will hinder their development (Ozone Action 1997). This tactic helped to achieve stalemate that threatened (and may still threaten) the (long-term) outcome of the Kyoto agreement. Whilst pressing home the need for LDCs to commit themselves to reducing their CO2 emissions, within the US, as part of the GCC, Exxon Chairman Lee Raymond was at the same time, urging Chinese industry and government officials not to accept emission limits.51 This 'double-edged diplomacy' was used by Eivind Retien, director of Norsk Hydro in Norway, who spoke out against CO2 taxes in Norway on the ground that other countries did not levy such taxes, while a fellow director of the company was opposing the adoption of the carbon tax, which would apply such a tax to other EU member states (Norway Daily, 24 June 1996).

Attempting to slow the work of the IPCC is another tactic used by the lobbies throughout the negotiation process. The IPCC has become a target because of the sway the lobbies feel it has over politicians.52 In January 1992, when the IPCC adopted its supplementary report, it developed updated and alternative reference scenarios in a move that was 'widely seen as a concession to the coal industry' (ECOAL 2 undated). This illustrates that lobbying these bodies that generate the knowledge base of policy enables lobbies to shape scientific input into the debate. The World Coal Institute, the Climate Council, the World Energy Council and other individual members of these and other fossil fuel lobbies, such as Mobil Oil,

51 Raymond said in his address to the World Petroleum Congress in Beijing, 'I hope that the governments of this region will work with us to resist policies that could strangle economic growth' (Greenpeace International

52 Pearce (1995d) also shows how a GCC-funded forecasting company called Accu-weather published a report at COP1 attempting to discredit the work of the IPCC. Questionnaire from Anderson (1996).

the National Coal Association and Edison Electric Institute, are all reviewers of IPCC Working Group 1 reports (IPCC 1995).

The GCC and Climate Council became embroiled in an open battle with the IPCC over procedure at an IPCC meeting in September 1994 (ENDS Report 1994b). The groups were accused by the IPCC of 'nit-picking', of seeking to delay the IPCC's work at every possible stage by raising points of order (after they had sent letters to leading US politicians complaining about abuse of procedure in the IPCC's work), and of forming an unholy alliance with the oil producing states (ibid.). Similarly the Global Commons Institute (GCI) claimed that in the run-up to COP2, scientists in the IPCC were 'yielding to pressure from industry to foresee yet higher atmospheric pollution as acceptable' (Global Commons Institute 1996:1). The GCI's claim is supported by the activities of the World Energy Council, a lobby group representing industries from more than 100 countries, which urged governments not to accept the IPCC recommendations published in June 1996 on the basis that the advice was deficient, unrealistic and influenced by academics seeking to attract funding for their work (Environment Digest 1996:9).


Commitments made at the international level are of course meaningless unless they are enforced, and some industry groups have made clear to governments their desire for any obligations that are undertaken to be enforced, for fear of a competitive edge being gained by rival companies in a 'free-riding' state.53 Yet at the implementation stage, the fossil fuel lobbies are also presented with further opportunities to delay the advancement of policies damaging to their interests.

The focus returns once more to the national level, where close relations with government can once again be utilised. In terms of the pace of implementation of greenhouse policies, governments are constrained by the willingness or otherwise of industry to cooperate. Porter and Brown (1996:62) note how the climate regime is 'particularly sensitive to the willingness of corporations in key countries to take actions that would allow the international community to go beyond the existing agreement'. In certain areas, control of energy production by many of the industries that make up the lobbies means that they are, by definition, a force with which governments have to negotiate on issues of energy planning and implementation (Nilsson and Pitt 1994:38).54 Moreover, in the post-Rio era, in which a dialogue is unfolding between governments and corporations about the most cost-effective way of achieving policy ends, the process of clarifying and implementing the terms of the Climate Convention offers further scope for bargaining and influence over policy. Many of the obligations in the convention are sufficiently ambiguous to enable

53 See ICCP (1994,1995).

54 Wilson (1990) shows how in the US in particular, powerful incentives operate to ensure that the agencies responsible for representing particular interests are sensitive to their concerns (such as budget cuts and the prospect of congressional brawls with those interests if they feel aggrieved).

industry groups to press upon governments their preferred interpretations of the commitments. The endorsement of joint implementation (JI) by the Kyoto Protocol and the opportunity to shape the agenda and operation of the newly created clean development mechanism (CDM), open up further avenues ofpotential industry input and influence. Both JI and the projects promoted and funded by the CDM will require the cooperation and supportive involvement of industry.

Direct lobbying also has a role to play at the implementation stage. Lobbies can get proposals watered down even after governments have agreed to them in international fora. Morand-Francis (1995:67) notes that in the immediate aftermath of the convention, 'it soon became clear to the various countries that implementing the required measures even with the label "no-regret" was no trivial matter'. Sebenius cites the case of Japan, which prior to UNCED agreed to cut its CO2 emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2000, yet by June 1993 had watered down legislation designed to meet this objective 'in response to strong opposition from Japanese business leaders and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry' (Sebenius 1994:295). Porter and Brown (1996:61) show how, in 1994, the National Association of Manufacturers and the US Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the electric power industry, threatened the funding for the US National Climate Change Action Plan in Congress after Clinton supported the negotiation of binding commitments at Berlin (the first meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Climate Convention) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions beyond the year 2000.

In a similar way, the UK government's plans to raise up to £400 million a year through levies (by the Energy Savings Trust) on gas and electricity bills as part of the government's convention obligations, were successfully resisted by the energy industry and its regulators, Ofgas and Offer (Environment Digest 1994:10; Pearce 1995c). O'Riordan and Rowbotham (1996:252) note that 'Established industry ... pressure groups circulating around DTI and the Treasury could easily see off the tax'. Where governments have sought to put measures in place, influential industries have successfully lobbied for exemption. In Norway the coal tax is limited to coal used for heating purposes, and heavy industries such as the metal and cement sectors are exempted, as are emissions from industrial processing. In Italy the Ministry of Industry and its affiliates, such as the UPI (the Italian Oil Board), said to be a 'powerful lobby in the energy debate', 'created obstacles throughout the process leading to the Italian CO2 stabilisation plan' and 'succeeded in imposing modifications in the plan itself' (Marchetti 1996:310,306).

Hence resistance generated as national governments come to implement their international commitments, can stall those proposals that are regarded as threatening to key economic sectors. In the case of the US, Grubb (1995a:89) notes how, despite the presence of environmentalists in the administration, implementation policy is dominated by Congress, where coal-producing states are strongly represented; a factor that militates against the implementation of legislation at the national and state levels. Frank Murkoweski, chair of the US Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, who receives the largest proportion of his corporate sponsorship from the oil and gas sector (Greenpeace International 1997), declared in a press briefing released at COP2 that the 'US negotiating position is likely to result in a treaty amendment or a new protocol that the Senate will be unable to ratify' (Murkoweski 1996). US environmentalist Dan Lashofidentifies the 'great influence' of the GCC (in terms of its degree of access to congress and the money it can invest in congressional campaigns) as 'one key reason why Congress is actively hostile and unsupportive to taking action on this issue'.55 Given this, the Kyoto Protocol faces a tough ride, made more difficult by the Senate's Byrd Resolution, which expressed the unwillingness of the Senate to ratify any agreement that does not contain commitments on the part of less developed countries. The lobbies have an obvious incentive to delay the implementation of the protocol for as long as possible. It has been estimated that even a one-year delay in ratification of the protocol by the US could benefit Exxon's bottom line by $200 million (Boyle 1998).

Deliberate non-cooperation in the implementation stage is a further channel of resistance for the lobbies. A number of energy sectors in Europe warned their governments that they would not proceed to meet voluntary energy efficiency targets if a carbon tax was implemented unilaterally; in effect closing off one of the proposed strategies for meeting the European stabilisation target (ENDS Report 1992b). Trade associations of appliance makers also managed to obstruct EU efforts to impose mandatory standards for energy efficiency on their products, by refusing to supply data or cooperate in an energy efficiency study upon which policy would be based, thus delaying the efforts of the EU to meet its obligations under the Climate Convention (Acid News 1994e).56

The above examples show that proposals can be altered, weakened or overturned altogether. Influence can be exerted in advance of negotiations, as well as when negotiations are under way. Failing that, strategies can be employed to ensure either that the implementation of measures is made as difficult as possible, or that some initiatives are not realised. The political power of the lobbies is apparent at every stage of the policy process on global warming.

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