News » The QueQue

DOD cutting â??non-combat' greenhouse gases, leans on Valero for the dirty stuff


Greg Harman

The sophisticated hacking of a major UK climate research center two weeks before the would-a-been-historic international gathering on climate change in Copenhagen last December “bore all the hallmarks of a co-ordinated intelligence operation,” according to Sir David King, former science advisor to past British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

King told the Guardian, “it was an extraordinarily sophisticated operation. There are several bodies of people who could do this sort of work. These are national intelligence agencies and it seems to me that it was the work of such a group of people.”

Such a group, he added, could be marshaled only by a foreign government or, perhaps, the well-funded “anti-climate change lobbyists” in the U.S.

The hacking preceded the United Nation's global conference on climate change, where representatives from around the world were hoping to cobble together a successor to the Kyoto Protocol with a binding reductions agreement intent on stabilizing the planet's climate.

The hacking â?? and subsequent mass misinterpretation and mischaracterization by U.S. media outlets like FOX â?? played a central role in squirreling the deal.

Obama, widely criticized for turning Copenhagen into a photo-op to announce agreements that hadn't actually been reached, came back to Washington with an edict for the federal government: reduce global-warming gases by 28 percent by 2020. In response, the U.S. Department of Defense committed to doing one better, or four better, with plans to cut by 34 percent by 2020.

However, these are “non-combat” emissions we're cutting. The ill-defined War on Terror continues to rack up monster carbon costs.

One of the top beneficiaries of the DOD's fossil fuel purchases is San Antonio-based Valero â?? ranked fourth among the agency's fuel contractors with Fiscal '08 earnings of $1.04 billion. The hometown crew just edged out The Bahrain Petroleum Company ($1.02 bil) and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company ($918 mil) for the honor, according to the Defense Energy Support Center.

Seems a plausible alternative explanation for the company's pump-based anti-climate legislation ad campaign â?¦ but is it enough to motivate top officers to fund a band of federally trained cyber-warfare renegades to remotely storm the East Anglia Climate Research Unit? Utter conspiratorial nonsense, I'm sure.

However, the profits do make American Apparel's $14-million arrangement for battle uniforms, coats, and trousers for the U.S. Air Force (being stitched together in Alabama, Mississippi, and Texas) sound like small (American-grown, organic) potatoes.

Still, there are plenty of other San Anto outfits earning less than a bil per-annum. Recently announced new or renewed contracts fueling the all-points conflict with ground stations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Yemen, include:

* LaBatt Food Service and Sterling Foods are keeping those Meals Ready To Eat as real as possible with continued $9-mil and $38-mil contracts, respectfully, for “full line food distribution” and bakery goods.

* Valero Marketing & Supply Co. earned another bump of federal largesse with $118 million for “aviation turbine fuel” out of the Corpus refinery.

* Connecticut-based Pratt & Whitney Military Engines bagged another $6-million contract for continued “maintenance, logistics and engineering supplies and services” performed in San Antonio for F-16A and F-16B engine parts.

* Decypher Technologies, Ltd, P3S Corp., and SpecPro Technical Services, each took a $93-mil contract for hyper-technical gobbledygook, ie. “administrative and functional support, medical and biomedical research assistance, clinical and clinical hyperbaric medicine services, environmental bio-terrorism support, technology evaluation and research studies support services to Brooks City-Base and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base units.”

* Three percent of an $8-mil Lockheed Martin project expected to showcase the possibilities that dedicated space for conducting “cyber security experiments” is also coming to San Antonio.

Remember, war is today's growth industry. It's the one front Obama's new fiscal conservatism won't touch â?? unless its something-less-than-surgical drone strikes we're talking about.

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