Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change

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Learn more from the Center for Media and Democracy's research on climate change.

The Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change is one of Mother Jones magazine's 2009 global warming skeptic "Dirty Dozen of Climate Change Denial"[1]. Founded in 1998 by members of the Idso family, its income has increased in recent years.

It employs Science and Public Policy Institute head Robert Ferguson.[2].

Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council

In August 2011, Center founder and Chairman Craig Idso spoke on "Benefit Analysis of CO2"[3] (previously known as "Warming Up to Climate Change: The Many Benefits of Increased Atmospheric CO2"[4]) at the Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force meeting at the 2011 American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Annual Meeting.[5] He was accompanied by Robert Ferguson of the Science and Public Policy Institute and MEP Roger Helmer, a Member of the European Parliament for the East Midlands of Great Britain who represents the Conservative Party and has used his position on the European Parliament to fight increased regulation of member states through the European Union.[5]

About ALEC
ALEC is a corporate bill mill. It is not just a lobby or a front group; it is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, corporations hand state legislators their wishlists to benefit their bottom line. Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations. They pay for a seat on ALEC task forces where corporate lobbyists and special interest reps vote with elected officials to approve “model” bills. Learn more at the Center for Media and Democracy's ALECexposed.org, and check out breaking news on our PRWatch.org site.


IRS Form 990 information

The Center's 2009 and 2010 IRS 990 report payments to Robert E. Ferguson of SPPI.

The 990 also reported $345,791 for contract labor.

The Center reported income of $25,449 for 2003 [6]; this could be[7] inconsistent with Exxon's reported 2003 donation of $40,000 plus Sarah Scaife Foundation's 2003 donation of $50,000.

Mission

The Center states on its website that its mission is to distribute "factual reports and sound commentary on new developments in the world-wide scientific quest to determine the climatic and biological consequences of the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content" [1].



Work products

The Center produces a weekly online science newsletter called CO2 Science Magazine.


Nonprofit status

The Center is a 501(c)(3), EIN 86-0902777, at a Tempe AZ address; it was founded in 1998.[8]

CO2Science - related, but a separate entity

Craig Idso's group CO2Science is a 501(c)(3) as well; it is EIN 20-2778308, at a Gilbert AZ address, and was founded in 2006.[9], [10]

Funding

Remarkable recent increases

The Center's yearly grants and contributions have increased since 2005:[11]

2009: $1,548,145
2008: $1,065,971
2007: $ 674,725
2006: $ 300,554
2005: $ 25,563
2004: $ 30,422
2003: $ 25,449

Policy: funding, funders kept confidential

On the Center's website, Sherwood B. Idso writes that "our typical response is that we never discuss our funding. Why? Because we believe that ideas about the way the world of nature operates should stand or fall on their own merits, irrespective of the source of support for the person or organization that produces them ... It is self-evident, for example, that one need not know from whence a person's or organization's funding comes in order to evaluate the reasonableness of what they say, if - and this is a very important qualification - one carefully studies the writings of people on both sides of the issue."[12]

The Center states on its website that it "accepts corporate, foundation and individual donations" and that "all donations are kept confidential".[13]

Funding from ExxonMobil

Sherwood Idso confirmed that Exxon "made some donations to us a few times in the past" but attributed this to the fact that "they probably liked what we typically had to say about the issue. But what we had to say then, and what we have to say now, came not, and comes not, from them or any other organization or person."[12]

ExxonMobil's 2001 list of groups it funded listed a $10,000 contribution to the Center in 2001. Center for Science in the Public Interest, "Center for the study of carbon dioxide and global change", Integrity in Science, undated, accessed March 2004. [14]

StopExxon.org reports the Center has received $90,000 from ExxonMobil between 1998 and 2005 comprising: [15]

  • 2008: 0?[16]
  • 2007: 0[17]
  • 2006: $10,000[15],[18]
  • 2005: $25,000
  • 2003: $40,000
  • 2000: $15,000
  • 1998: $10,000

Funding from Sarah Scaife Foundation

According to MediaTransparency, in 1999 the Center received $50,000 from the Sarah Scaife Foundation, and in 2003 another $50,000 for "General operating support"[19]; but this information may conflict with the Center's 2003 "Grants and contributions" Form 990 numbers above.[20]

Other fossil fuel ties

1999, Western Fuels Association

In October 1999 Craig D. Idso and Keith E. Idso mentioned that they had "recently completed a project commissioned by the Greening Earth Society entitled "Forecasting World Food Supplies: The Impact of the Rising Atmospheric CO2 Concentration," which we presented at the Second Annual Dixy Lee Ray Memorial Symposium held in Washington, DC on 31 August - 2 September 1999." [21] The Greening Earth Society, a front group of the Western Fuels Association.

2006, Oil industry business: Cenospheres

Craig Idso incorporated Cenospheres.net Inc., serving the oilfield industry, in 2006.[22]

Personnel

Advisors

Donald Paul Hodel, chairman of Summit Power Group, was listed among the "scientific advisors" to the Center.[24] The Center's scientific advisors are: [to be added]

Contact details

Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
P.O. Box 25697
Tempe, AZ 85285-5697
USA


Telephone: 480-966-3719
Fax: 480-966-0758
Email: staff AT co2science.org
Web: http://www.co2science.org/center.htm

Articles and Resources

Other SourceWatch resources

References

  1. Josh Harkinson, The Dirty Dozen of Climate Change Denial: No. 8: Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change (A.K.A. The Idso Family), Mother Jones, December 4, 2009, Accessed August 26, 2010.
  2. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 2010 IRS form 990, on Guidestar.org (EIN 86-0902777)
  3. American Legislative Exchange Council, ALEC 2011 Annual Meeting Agenda, online meeting agenda, image archived August 3, 2011
  4. American Legislative Exchange Council, ALEC 2011 Annual Meeting Agenda, online meeting agenda, image archived July 22, 2011
  5. 5.0 5.1 American Legislative Exchange Council, "Energy, Environment, and Agriculture 2011 Annual Meeting Task Force Meeting," speaker biographies and materials, August 4, 2011, on file with CMD
  6. (as seen on its 2007 Form 990)
  7. But it could also be that the fiscal years don't match up; haven't gone back to check for this possibility
  8. Guidestar on Center
  9. (Though if I read the 990s correctly, it reports income starting in 2005.)
  10. Guidestar on CO2Science
  11. 2005-2009 numbers come from the Center's 2009 IRS Form 990, 2003-2004 from its 2007 990, on Guidestar.org .
  12. 12.0 12.1 Sherwood B. Idso, "What Motivates the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change?", Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, accessed April 2008.
  13. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, ""Contribute To The Center", accessed April 2008.
  14. Exxon, Public Information and Policy Research", archived file from October 2001, accessed June 2007.
  15. 15.0 15.1 "FACTSHEET: Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, Center for the Study of CO2 and Climate Change", Exxonsecrets.org, accessed June 2007.
  16. (unknown, presumably 0. URL?)
  17. ExxonMobil 2007 Worldwide Giving Report
  18. Exxon 2006 Worldwide Giving Report, accessed March 2011
  19. [http://mediamattersaction.org/transparency/organization/Center_for_the_Study_of_Carbon_Dioxide_and_Global_Change link, accessed 2011-03-31
  20. Part of the inconsistency could happen if the fiscal years don't match up; haven't gone back to check for this possibility
  21. Craig D. Idso and Keith E. Idso, "Give Peace a Chance by Giving Plants a Chance", Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, Volume 2, Number 19: 1 October 1999.
  22. AZ Corp Comm; It was dissolved in Aug. 2008, a few months after Cenospheres LLC was formed with principals J. Idso and L. Idso. (File #L-1449046-2)
  23. From 2009 IRS form 990, on Guidestar
  24. "CO2 Science," Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change website, accessed July 2008

External Resources

External Articles