Koch-backed governor forbids the Department of Environmental Protection from doing its job

March 10, 2015

Florida Governor Rick Scott has come up with a fool-proof plan for dealing with climate change: ignore the problem and hope it goes away.

According to officials at the agency, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, ostensibly in charge of studying and preparing for the impacts of climate change, is reportedly forbidden from using the terms“climate change” and ”global warming.”

The ban went into effect after Scott took office in 2011. Although Scott denies that he was the one to issue the gag order, historically he has refused to acknowledge the reality of man-made climate change even after a group of Florida scientists sat him down and explained it to him.

Former DEP employees claim they were told never to use either of those terms “in any official communications, emails or reports,” because “we were not allowed to discuss anything that was not a true fact.”

This rationale sounds awfully familiar. In order to protect their petrochemical empire, the Koch brothers have funneled millions of dollars to climate denial front groups and launched massive lobbying efforts against climate change legislation.

Koch Industries made large contributions to Scott’s re-election campaign, and the Kochs’ primary political arm, Americans For Prosperity, has put more than 40 paid staffers on the ground in the Sunshine State.

It’s clear that Scott’s climate change denial is detrimental to the people and the landscape of Florida. But at least he’s keeping his investors happy.

Paid for by American Bridge 21st Century Foundation