Bechtel Group, Inc.
This article is part of the Center for Media & Democracy's focus on the fallout of nuclear "spin."
Bechtel Group, Inc. is the largest contractor in the U.S. The company does construction projects worldwide. It has been involved in such projects as the cleanup at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and the construction of Hoover Dam. The company makes most of its money from oil, gas & chemicals and from government contracts. With Chairman and CEO Riley P. Bechtel at the head, the Bechtel family is in its fourth generation of leadership of the company. 
Bechtel is a defense contractor with very strong political ties and a long history of doing business in Iraq, including an unsuccessful pipeline deal that at one point involved a meeting between Donald H. Rumsfeld, former secretary of defense, and Saddam Hussein. That project later drew scrutiny from a special prosecutor looking into allegations of impropriety involving Edwin A. Meese III, the former White House counsel and attorney general in the Reagan administration. 
Coal projects sponsored by Bechtel
- Bechtel / Kennecot Project (Montana) - cancelled
- Gilberton Coal-to-Clean-Fuels and Power Project (Pennsylvania)
- Trimble County Generating Station 2 (Kentucky)
Renewable energy projects
- Lake Erie wind project near Cleveland, Ohio
- Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, Mohave Desert, California
With Bin Laden Group
Jane Mayer of The New Yorker writes about the connections of Bechtel, the Bin Laden Group/family, and Bush, and past, administration officials, "The bin Ladens have a ten-million-dollar stake in the Fremont Group, a San Francisco-based company formerly called Bechtel Investments, which was until 1986 a subsidiary of Bechtel. The Fremont Group's Web site, which makes no mention of the bin Ladens, notes that 'though now independent, Fremont enjoys a close relationship with Bechtel.' Mayer further writes, "One Fremont director, Riley Bechtel, is the chairman and chief executive officer of the Bechtel Group, and is a member of the Bush administration: he was appointed this year to serve on the President's Export Council. In addition, George P. Shultz, the Secretary of State in the Ronald Reagan Administration, serves as a director both of Fremont and of the Bechtel Group, where he once was president and still is listed as senior counsellor." 
With U.S. Government
- "Former Secretary of Defense, Caspar Weinberger, was vice president and general counsel of the Bechtel Group before going to Washington in 1980." 
- "Daniel Chao, a Bechtel senior vice president, serves on the very same advisory committee of the Export-Import Bank of the United States while Ross J. Connelly, a 21-year veteran of Bechtel Group, is the chief operating officer for the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the other major source of funding from the federal government for American companies overseas." 
- "Jack Sheehan, a senior vice president at Bechtel, is a member of the Defense Policy Board ... Andrew Natsios, the administrator of USAID, which awarded the reconstruction contract for Iraq, was overseeing Bechtel just two years ago as the chairman of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, which hired the company to complete the Boston Central Artery project."
- The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is operated by the Midwest Research Institute (MRI), Battelle, and Bechtel.
CorpWatch wrote in 2003, George P. Schultz, Bechtel board member, "used his political connections to lobby on behalf of a military invasion of Iraq. Bechtel received a request to bid on the reconstruction of Iraq before the invasion even began in a secret, undemocratic process. The contract itself has still not been seen by the Congress, much less the American public. Bechtel has once again used its revolving door to benefit itself and its friends at the expense of the majorities of the world's people and the planet." 
 Key executives:
- Riley P. Bechtel, Chairman and CEO
- Adrian Zaccaria, President and Chief Operating Officer
- Jude Laspa, Deputy Chief Operating Officer
Selected board members:
- Steve Bechtel, Jr., Chairman, Retired
- Alan Dachs, President & Chief Executive Officer, Fremont Group
- Peter Dawson, Chief Financial Officer
50 Beale St.
San Francisco, CA 94105
Articles and resources
Related SourceWatch articles
- BWX Technologies Inc.
- defense contractors
- Iraq's oil industry
- Military-industrial complex
- nuclear weapons complex
- oil industry
- Post-war Iraq
- Post-war Iraq contractors
- Robert Joss
- ↑ Bechtel Profile, Hoovers, accessed August 2007.
- ↑ New projects.
- ↑ Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System.
- ↑ 2006 PAC Summary Data, Open Secrets, accessed August 2007.
- ↑ "Bechtel: Profiting from Destruction", CorpWatch, June 5, 2003.
- ↑ Bechtel lobbying expenses, Open Secrets.
- ↑ Leadership, Bechtel, accessed August 2007.
- Bob Herbert, "Ultimate Insiders", The New York Times, April 14, 2003.
- Iraq Reconstruction Contract, Washington Post, April 17, 2003.
- "Bechtel Has Ties in Washington, and to Iraq," The New York Times, April 18, 2003.
- David R. Baker, USA: Bechtel to Rebuild Iraq. Politically Connected Firm Wins $680 Million Bid, San Franciso Chronicle, April 18, 2003.
- Documentation of Rumsfeld in Iraq to sell Bechtel pipleline in 1983. Secret state department documents show he knew Iraq was using poison gas (WMD) against the Kurds at the time.
- Pratap Chatterjee, Bechtel's Friends in High Places, CorpWatch, April 24, 2003.
- Pratap Chatterjee, Bechtel Wins Iraq War Contracts, CorpWatch, April 24, 2003: "Soon after Riley Bechtel was appointed as an advisor to Bush, on April 21, Terry Valenzano, the man who ran Bechtel's construction business in Saudi Arabia, flew into Kuwait city to meet with Jay Garner, the Pentagon official appointed to oversee Iraq. The two men met at the Hilton resort to plan the reconstruction of Iraq after the fall of Saddam Hussein's government."
- Jane Mayer, "Dept. Of Connections: The Contractors," The New Yorker, April 28, 2003.
- Pratap Chatterjee, Bechtel's Nuclear Nightmares, CorpWatch, May 1, 2003.
- Pratap Chatterjee, Bechtel's Water Wars, CorpWatch, May 1, 2003.
- Pratap Chatterjee, Bechtel drums up war business, Asia Times, May 22, 2003.
- CorpWatch, Public Citizen, Global Exchange, "Global Exchange, and Public Citizen, Bechtel: Profiting from Destruction. Why the Corporate Invasion of Iraq Must be Stopped", June 5, 2003, accessed January 13, 2004. "These case studies reveal a legacy of unsustainable and destructive practices that have reaped permanent human, environmental and community devastation around the globe."
- U.S. Government's Iraq Infrastructure Reconstruction Program, with August 19, 2003, Project Update and List of Awarded Subcontracts (since April 25, 2003) for USAID Contract EEE-C-00-03-00018-00.
- Karim El-Gawhary, "Bechtel Fails Reconstruction of Iraq's Schools", Corpwatch, December 2, 2003.
- "Bechtel lands Qatar airport deal," BBC/UK, January 24, 2004: "Qatar has signed a contract with US engineering giant Bechtel to build a new airport for its capital Doha. The scheme is expected to cost a total of about $5bn. Passenger handling capacity will be boosted to 12m when the first phase is completed by 2009."
- "Windfalls of War", Center for Public Integrity, January 25, 2004: "Contracts and Reports."
- A.C. Thompson, "Inside Bechtel's Spin Machine," San Francisco Bay Guardian, May 5, 2004.
- Antonia Juhasz, "Bechtel Takes a Hit for War Profiteering," AlterNet, August 4, 2006.
- David R. Baker, "Bechtel pulling out after 3 rough years of rebuilding work," San Francisco Chronicle, November 1, 2006.
- Press release, "DOE Cites Bechtel National Inc. for Price-Anderson Violations," U.S. Department of Energy, September 15, 2008.
- Press release, "DOE Cites Bechtel National Inc. for Price-Anderson Violations," U.S. Department of Energy, December 3, 2008.
- Annette Cary, "DOE set to fine Hanford contractor Bechtel $385,000," Tri-City Herald (Tri-Cities, Washington), December 4, 2008.