Sunday, April 26, 2009

Intel's Hypocrisy Exposed....Again

A few weeks ago, Intel's Government Affairs Manager assured me that Intel "remains committed to the principle that Oregon continues to lead on the critical issues of carbon reduction and climate change." He also said, "I hope and believe there will be legislation this year that delivers on that goal." This was after members of the Cascade Climate Network, myself included, had invited Intel to lobby in support of Oregon's Senate Bill 80 - a cap on greenhouse emissions in our state. Intel's reply, in essence, can be summed up like this: We can't lobby for SB 80 right now, but don't worry; we're confident Oregon will pass plenty of great global warming laws this year.

Well, a few weeks after Intel tried to reassure us that there was no need for them to lobby on behalf of SB 80, the bill is in tatters. SB 80 is no longer even a cap on greenhouse emissions - it simply instructs Oregon agencies to find ways of reducing emissions, and gives them a lot of discretion in the process. Hmm....looks like Intel was a little over-confident about the prospects for prospects on "the critical issues of carbon reduction and climate change" moving forward without their help. Of course, while refusing to step up in defense of SB 80, Intel was still lending its membership to the alliance of corporate interests bent on destroying climate policy in this state....

Intel helped kill SB 80. It's time to hold them accountable.

-Nick Engelfried

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tell the Oregonian: Intel's Messing with Our Future!

We've just been handed a prime opportunity to call Intel out on its greenwashing. Yesterday, the Oregonian ran an article on the hurdles facing climate policy in Oregon in light of the economic downturn. This article specifically listed the ironically named Oregonians for Balanced Climate Policy as the principle opponent of Senate Bill 80. Now, Oregonians for Balanced Climate Policy, despite the grassroots sound of the title, is no citizen-initiated network of ordinary Oregonians. Instead, it's a conglomeration of major business associations including Industrial Customers of Northwest Utilities, of which Intel is a member.

Can you write a brief letter to the Oregonian editor, and let them know what you think of Intel's membership in this corporate interest group? You can email your letter to

Certainly, Intel doesn't control everything Oregonians for Balanced Climate Policy does. But by lending groups like this the support of their membership, and then doing almost nothing to counter the group's attack on Senate Bill 80 and other progressive climate policies, Intel is letting Big Business sink Oregon's clean energy future. It's hugely important that the public realize what's going on here: a company which paints itself as "green" is preparing to let sustainability policy in Oregon fall by the wayside. Please take a few minutes to write a short letter to the Oregonian, and give them your 2 cents.

Hints for effective letter-writing: keep it short and to the point - no more than 150 words. You can email your letter to; be sure to include your name, phone number, and a address, which they require for confirmation purposes. It only takes a few minutes, and could make a big difference. Please write to the Oregonian today!

-Nick Engelfried

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Is Intel a Fossil Fool?

Yesterday, approximately 50 students from colleges and universities across Oregon converged on our state capitol to lobby our elected officials for bold climate policy. A representative of Intel was there with us, to support the goal of a clean energy future for Oregon, and show that the largest private employer in this state is willing to stand with the youth of Oregon in confronting the most urgent environmental challenge of our time.

April fools!!!

The part about Oregon's youth climate movement is true; we really were in Salem yesterday to push our representatives for real action on global warming and clean energy. We members of the Cascade Climate Network showed that the young people of this country are not going to sit there and let industry kill the progressive climate legislation moving forward in Oregon. But the part about Intel is the April Fools (Fossil Fools) Day joke. The Cascaded Climate Network's Corporate Accountability branch challenged Intel to live up to its green rhetoric by lobbying with us yesterday. But Intel's head lobbyist said no.

Show Intel what you think of their foolishness by voting in the pole at left!

What was Intel's excuse? We asked them to support SB 80 - the bill that would put a permanent cap on Oregon's greenhouse emissions - and Intel claimed they couldn't get behind it because they hadn't yet seen the exact wording of the bill. Well, that's understandable. But then I suggested that they join us in simply lobbying for a cap on carbon, with the understanding that the company couldn't commit to any bill until they saw the final wording. Intel still wouldn't join us. In fact, their head lobbyist said it was "disturbing" that we would assume Intel supported a cap on carbon, just because they claim to be a leader in corporate sustainability. Come again?

I'd say that this week, Intel showed itself to be a true "fossil fool" - a company that may talk the talk, but is not walking the walk when it comes to leadership in sustainability. If you agree, please vote on the poll at left, and help the Cascade Climate Network deliver Intel a "foolie" - an award that officially recognizes their fossil foolishness, and urges them to get their act together.

Let's call for an end to Intel's foolishness.

-Nick Engelfried

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Ask Intel to Lobby for Clean Energy with the Cascade Climate Network!

With the latest online action tool from Uncover Intel Secrets, you can ask Intel lobbyist Jonathan Williams to join the student-run Cascade Climate Network in pushing for clean energy and solutions to global warming. The Cascade Climate Network will be holding a lobby day in Salem sometime this February (official date to be announced) - and we want Intel to be there lobbying with us! By coming to the CCN lobby day, Intel can show it is serious about its green claims, and make good on its promise to push for clean energy in 2009. Please ask Jonathan Williams to attend the CCN lobby day at


Friday, November 21, 2008

Northwest Students Ready for Action on Global Warming!

The weekend of November 15th and 16th, students from across the Northwest converged in Seattle for Re-Energize the Northwest - a global warming summit designed as a way for young people to come together and pool their resources for making change in this region. At Re-Energize the Northwest, which was sponsored by the Sierra Club and the Sierra Student Coalition, and hosted by the Cascade Climate Network, we heard from campaigns and issues ranging from kicking coal and Liquefied Natural Gas out of the Northwest to exploitation of the Amazon Rainforest by oil companies. The Uncover Intel Secrets campaign was one of many voices at the summit, and our small but growing group of Uncover Intel organizers made significant headway in planning the campaign that will convince Intel Corporation to live up to the green image it has painted for itself. We'll soon have more ways for you to help urge Intel to take up this more active role promoting clean energy and solutions to global warming in our area. For now, though, I'm just glad to say that the Re-Energize the Northwest was an amazing success, and an inspiring thing to have been a part of - and that student groups like the Cascade Climate Network are making ready for a historic Oregon legislative session in 2009.


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Guest Column: Oregon Energy Agenda '09

This guest column by climate activist Jesse Jenkins is cross-posted from WattHead - Energy News and Commentary. Jesse gives us a preview Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski's plan to curb greenhouse emissions and facilitate our state's transition to renewable energy sources in 2009. If the steps Jesse outlines become reality in our state, we will truly be a national leader in the emerging clean energy economy - but we have to make sure the giant business associations don't stand in the way of this transition. All I have to add to Jesse's piece is that if you follow the link to the Oregonian article below, you'll see that Industrial Customers of Northwest Utilities (ICNU) is already speaking up against Kulongoski's ambitious plan. If that's not a sign that Intel needs to distance itself from the rampantly anti-environmental ICNU, then I don't know what is. -Nick

Guest Column: Governor Ted Kulongoski Unveils Clean Energy Agenda for 2009
By Jesse Jenkins

Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski unveiled the ambitious clean energy agenda he hopes to see implemented by the 2009 Oregon Legislature on Monday. Following up on a landmark 2007 legislative session that saw the Beaver State enact an ambitious renewable energy standard, expand tax credits for clean energy, and enact new standards for energy efficiency, Governor Kulongoski isn’t resting on his laurels.

“Climate change is the most important environmental and economic issue of our time,” Kulongoski said as he laid out his proposal for new clean energy tax incentives and ambitious goals he wants the 2009 Legislature to adopt.

On Monday, Governor Kulongoski said it’s time to redouble the state’s commitment to a clean energy future. “In 2009, we must be bolder, more comprehensive and even more visionary,” Kulongoski said. Right on!

According to the Oregonian, Kulongoski’s proposals include:

• Greenhouse gas reduction: Authorizes regional cap-and-trade system for carbon emissions; sets limits on emissions from the state’s largest sources; sets low-carbon standards for all new electricity generation

• Energy efficiency: Establishes energy performance certificates for new homes or commercial buildings, similar to MPG ratings for new cars; sets goal of zero-emission new buildings by 2030; allows 50 percent tax credit for large-scale energy efficiency projects, up to $20 million

• Renewable energy: Sets up pilot program to pay for energy produced from solar projects; establishes tax credit for residents who donate to a renewable energy incentive fund

• Transportation: Offers $5,000 credit for purchase of new plug-in hybrid or all-electric car; authorizes new low-carbon fuel standard similar to those in Washington and California
His plans to implement a cap and trade program, joining with other states in the Western Climate Initiative, will likely draw the most opposition. Groups representing industrial energy consumers are already lining up in opposition. But it’s clear that Governor Kulongoski, who faces his last legislative session as Oregon’s governor, has decided to pin his legacy on efforts to make Oregon a clean energy leader and tackle global warming.

More on Kulongoski’s clean energy plans at the Oregonian

Jesse Jenkins is leading student activist in the western US states. He is a co-founder of the Cascade Climate Network, and blogmaster for Watthead - Energy News and Commentary. He is now co-directing the Breakthrow Institute's IN campaign in California. Jesse has fought to bring renewable power into fruition in the western states, and helped prevent 800 MW of new coal plants from going on-line in the Northwest. He now lives in Berkely, California.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

It's Time for a Clean Energy Party! Will Intel be There?

Thursday evening, I emailed Intel lobbyist and Public Affairs Manager Jonathan Williams, asking him to clarify Intel's position on clean energy legislation, and their connection to the highly anti-environmental group Industrial Customers of Northwest Utilities. Last time I emailed Mr Williams about these issues, he declined to answer; this time, we need to make sure Intel pays attention. That's why I'm asking YOU to invite Intel to the clean energy party that starts with the beginning of Oregon's 2009 legislative session - when bills aimed at reducing greenhouse emissions and facilitating our state's transition to renewable energy will be almost certainly be some of the most important legislative pieces up for discussion. Here's how you can send Intel an "invitation" to the action:

2) You’ll have to register by entering your name and email. Then you’ll be able to see a “Share Invitation” box on the right side of the page.

3) The invitations need to go to Jonathan Williams, lobbyist and public affairs manager for Intel Oregon; so enter “Jonathan Williams” and the email address into the appropriate spaces under “Share Invitation.”

4) Hit the “Invite” button to send your invitation to Intel.

5) IMPORTANT: Finally, let me and others working on the Intel campaign know your invitation has been sent. Just reply to this blog post, preferably with your name and school, so I can keep track of who has contacted Intel.

It’s that simple! Please take a moment to show Intel how many people care about passing clean energy legislation in Oregon in 2009. It’s especially awesome if you’re from Oregon, but folks from other areas can invite Intel to the party, too. After all, Intel products are sold everywhere!

Nick Engelfried