Photo by Angel (a)
Guest Post from Green Talk reader, Jim, a retired civil engineer who is fascinated by solar and wind technology:
I am not usually paranoid. But I just can’t stop thinking about how one of the biggest oil companies in the world is now one of America’s largest solar power companies.
This oil company is doing solar power at a few dozen spots around the country, San Jose Unified School District, Contra Costa Community College District, University of Buffalo, the U.S. Postal Service and even a few oil fields. (For more information, see this LA Times story.)
I’m sure the folks at Chevron are nice people who love their mothers and recycle soda bottles.
But really, let’s take a minute to state the obvious: What in the name of all that is green is an oil company like Chevron doing getting all this solar business?
Just a few months ago 60 Minutes ran a story about the environmental nightmare Chevron left behind in Latin America. The show documented in some detail how Chevron’s practices devastated an entire region Ecuador. And how Chevron is refusing to take responsibility for the billions of dollars in damage from among other things, dumping 18 billion gallons of toxic wastewater.
According to MatadorChange.com’s Chevron’s article,
“Chevron has consistently engaged in business and environmental practices that have had very real and devastating consequences for communities and ecosystems in South America, Africa, and on other continents.”
Want to see a movie about it, go see Crude.
And then wonder why anyone would think they are fit to be one of America’s largest solar companies — especially for schools.
Here’s another Chevron devastating critique. They go on and on. How many more examples do you want? Just Google it and you can get as many as you need from all around the world.
And now they want to dominate the solar business as well?
Think KKK enforcing the civil rights laws.
Think Yankees running the Red Sox.
Think anything you want, but if you are any part of hiring an oil company to provide renewable energy, you are either crazy or stupid.
If you need it explained why, you are stupid.
If you don’t believe that explanation, you are crazy.
The irony is not lost on members of the environmental community. Following a New York Times story about Chevron doing solar in the New York Times, one blogger wrote:
“This is insane – why use solar to extract oil (okay that is a good idea) – why not simply use solar to replace oil – I am sick of appeasing the oil company magnates – lets discharge oil future and bet on the SUN for our electricity.”
“sigh. what a waste, to use clean energy to continue doing bad things.”
“So what the hell is fossil fuel-powered Chevron Oil, one of the planet’s biggest and worst polluters and producers of deadly climate-changing greenhouse gasses that are currently overheating the atmosphere, doing as a long-term regular sponsor of the Los Angeles Lakers?
Why are they allowed to pimp more global warming gasoline to children in an animated propaganda piece they run at every single Lakers game? Isn’t that the moral equivalent of Joe Camel being used to sell cigarettes to kids?
The Lakers and Staples Center are trying to market a green image, and they’re spending millions of dollars to produce green energy and promote a sustainable business. But if they’re also taking money from Chevron and promoting the use of Chevron’s planet-killing product then they’re flat-out practicing greenwashing. And there is no acceptable excuse for it.”
And what about the schools? Chevron brags it is doing more schools than anyone. Well here is what they do not say:
Schools want their solar energy systems to be more than just a way to generate power. They want to use solar as an educational tool to learn about the environment and business and physics and even math and science.
And they depend on the solar company to help with that curriculum. That is what they are doing in Irvine, California and other places. (See also here for another Irving , California solar story.)
So now Chevron is in the teaching about oil business? I know a TV show and a movie that should be part of the curriculum. So, Call me paranoid but I think that is crazy. And any school board member who buys into that scheme is crazier still.
Even paranoid people have enemies.
Thanks Jim for bringing the Chevron story to Green Talk. Readers, watch this video. It says it all about the power of corporate energy Chevron’s way.
Note, Jim’s views and research are his own. I only edited his piece to make it easier to read on the site.
So, Readers, what are our thoughts about Chevron in the solar arena? What about BP solar? Do we have a fox in the hen house?
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