Putin Funded Extreme Anti-Fossil Energy Groups in Europe; Is it Happening Here Too?

Putin Funded Extreme Anti-Fossil Energy Groups in Europe; Is it Happening Here Too?

March 16, 2022

As Vladimir Putin continues his brutal invasion of Ukraine, more and more of the insidious tactics his regime has used to seize energy control of Europe have come to light. According to experts who spoke with Fox News, the Russians funded some of the most extreme anti-fracking environmental groups across the continent over the past decade. That funding paid off. Fox writes:

“By 2016, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Scotland and Bulgaria had all banned fracking, either temporarily or permanently. Russia’s power over European energy grew large by 2022, providing roughly 40% of the continent’s natural gas supply. Lithuania, for example, gets 83% of its oil imports from Russia, Poland gets 58% and Finland 80%.”

Making Russian oil the lifeblood of Europe’s economy was always part of Putin’s plan, and he intended to do it through extreme green groups. These Russian-funded groups would publicly attack domestic natural gas production causing these nations to turn to Russia.

“’The Russians actually fund some of the most rabid environmental groups in Europe because they sic them on the energy projects that aren’t Russian,’ James Carafano, vice president of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy at the Heritage Foundation, told Fox News Digital in a recent phone interview.”

Now, Republicans in Congress are asking if the Russians used the same playbook in the United States. Fox News reports that the head of the Republican Study Committee Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) led a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen calling on her to launch an investigation into whether Russia secretly funded green groups that advocate against domestic oil production.

The letter focuses on a San Francisco-based NGO environmental organization called the Sea Change Foundation, which may be a conduit for Russian oil interests. Big environmental groups including the League of Conservation Voters (LCV), the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), and the Sierra Club reportedly have ties to the Sea Change Foundation and may have received funding from it. Rep. Banks told Fox News that the Russian funds have already accomplished some of their goals.

“Russia spent millions promoting anti-energy policies and politicians in the U.S.,” Banks said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “Now, thanks to Biden’s war on domestic energy, U.S. oil production has dropped 10%, pushing up prices and enriching and emboldening Putin before he invaded Ukraine.”

The Ranking Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee also sent a letter demanding answers directly from the three environmental groups. The American people deserve to know if Russia is funding anti-American energy propaganda and green group activities in the United States.