ACCCE’s Wild and Crazy Advertising Claims Debunked

ACCCE’s Wild and Crazy Advertising Claims Debunked
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The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE) is running ads on the websites of the Washington Post and The Hill citing a potentially fraudulent survey which claims that “72% of opinion leaders support coal electricity.”

Brian Angliss over at Scholars and Rogues tears the ACCCE claim apart, revealing how the coal industry’s favorite front group is cooking up some crazy statistics in an effort to convince the public that three quarters of America’s “opinion leaders” just can’t get enough coal into the fire that’s wrecking our climate. 

Angliss asked ACCCE to cough up the methodology for this prestigious survey of theirs, but didn’t get a response.  So he ran some rough calculations of the ACCCE definition of “opinion elites” against Census Bureau and labor statistics data and found that as little as 0.4% of the country would qualify as “opinion leaders” in ACCCE’s test.  Errors abound in other aspects of ACCCE’s survey acumen, according to Angliss.

“In summary, the survey as its described in the ACCCE press release suffers from a number of critical problems: an amazingly tight definition of the survey’s population, no defined margins of error for any of the questions individually or for the survey in its entirety, an unexplained discrepancy regarding how many years the poll has been taken, and an outright lie,” he wrote.

A more accurate description of ACCCE’s survey would be “We handpicked 600 filthy rich people and coal industry executives for our survey, and (only) 72% say that coal is the greatest thing ever, so it must be true.  Forget renewable energy, let’s burn this mother down!”

In the cautious lingo of a scientist, Angliss concludes that “it’s almost certainly accurate to say that the ACCCE advertisement is unsupported bunk.”

Almost certainly, indeed.

ACCCE’s Wild and Crazy Advertising Claims Debunked

Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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