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Groups soliciting funds to buy BLM leases
Ben Winslow, Deseret News
Supporters of a man who disrupted an auction of land for oil and gas development near some of Utah's most famous national parks are trying to raise money to buy the land themselves.
The Moab-based Center for Water Advocacy has set up a legal defense fund for Tim DeChristopher on its Web site, wateradvocacy.org. DeChristopher won bids totaling about $1.7 million in his efforts to disrupt the controversial Dec. 19 auction.
... DeChristopher, 27, has admitted to bidding to run up the value of some parcels. He won 13 parcels of land but said he had no intention of paying for them. When other bidders became suspicious, he was taken into custody by federal authorities.
... "The federal officials who took me into custody said that I cost the oil companies in the room hundreds of thousands of dollars and prevented 22,500 acres of land from being sold for fossil fuel development," DeChristopher wrote in a Dec. 20 commentary on the blog oneutah.org. "I had a very open conversation with the federal agents about my motives and values. They were friendly, respectful and somewhat sympathetic."
DeChristopher acknowledges he faces the possibility of prison time but believes what he did was right.
(26 December 2008)
Related column by Amy Goodman at Seattle P-I: 'Direct action gets the goods'.
Coal Front Group Sets Up Dirty ‘Blogger Brigade’ To Fight Reality»
Brad Johnson, The Wonk Room, Think Progress
The coal industry is attempting to organize bloggers to promote their false “clean coal” propaganda. The Reality Coalition, a group of national environmental organizations, have begun airing the message that “There’s no such thing as clean coal,” to counter the hundreds of millions of dollars spent by coal-powered corporations to pretend that coal is a “clean” fuel. So the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE) and Americans for Balanced Energy Choices (ABEC), essentially one coal propaganda group with two different faces, is fighting back with an email blast asking people to join their “Blogger Brigade”:
You can get into the debate. If you are interested in becoming an active member of ABEC’s Blogger Brigade just send me an e-mail to XXXX and let me know you’re interested. One of our team members will give you a call and walk you through the process. It’s really easy – and for those of you who don’t already Blog, it is fun! You can join the online debate that’s already going on and you and others can remain anonymous (if you want to) at the same time! We’ll even set up a little competition to see how many Blog entries each person can make.
The structure of the effort doesn't seem much different than that of environmental activists. Perhaps peak oilers could pick up a few tips? I like the idea of bloggers-in-training.
The cheery tone is a nice contrast to the climate deniers who infest the Comments sections of online publications. But wouldn't it be even better for the coal industry to forego this low-level PR war, and instead to deal openly with climate change?
For example, at the Sacramento ASPO-USA conference, professor David Hughes presented a realistic approach: "Why coal is unlikely to go away but what must be done to intelligently manage coal use."
PDF of his slides
Notes on the Hughes talk recorded by Chris Nelder (scroll down about half-way in the document)
Korea oil bunker
Yonhap, JoongAng Daily (Korea)
Ready for oil
Workers walk through an underground oil bunker yesterday in Yeosu, South Jeolla. Korea National Oil Corp. announced it has completed the world’s largest oil bunker, which can hold 49.7 million barrels of oil. This is roughly enough to meet Korea’s oil needs for 23 days. Until now, an oil bunker in Geoje was the largest in the world with a storage capacity of 47.5 million barrel. The government hopes the Yeosu bunker will serve as a North Asian storage hub.
(24 December 2008)
Impressive photo at original.