Atlantic Legal Foundation

Atlantic Legal Foundation (ALF)

Background

The Atlantic Legal Foundation (ALF) is a non-profit law firm established in 1977 with the mission of “advocating limited and efficient government, free enterprise, individual liberty, school choice and sound science.” [1]

ALF provides legal services pro bono to individuals, corporations, and trade associations. The organization focuses its operations on issues affecting free enterprise and on “limited constitutional government.” [1]

While ALF acknowledges that climate change is a real issue, the organization has opposed the EPA in court on topics such as the clean water act and the regulation of automobiles’ CO2 emissions[2][25][6]

Among the organization’s more prominent members is A. Alan MoghissiAccording to an article at PR Watch, Moghissi characterizes environmentalism as a belief that “members of endangered species deserve protection and that, because there are billions of humans, humanity does not qualify for protection.” [27]

Moghissi also supports, or is a member of, organizations that question the existence of man-made climate change, including the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change and the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow[28]

Rodney W. Nichols is another prominent ALF member with a history of questioning the existence of man-made climate change. Nichols is affiliated with various organizations that promote climate science contrarianism, such as the CO2 Coalition and the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research[29]

In February 2016, Nichols co-authored a New York Post article that included the following quote: [30]

The war on fossil fuels isn’t based on science but on unreliable climate models. Rather than trying to correct the models, Team Obama is trying to ‘dispute the science’ by trying to manufacture scary warming trends.”

ALF includes programs in the following areas:

Stance on Climate Change

In an Amicus Brief filed on October 25, 2006, the ALF expressed the following in a footnote: “There is no doubt that CO2 levels in the atmosphere have risen faster than at any time in history and there is little doubt that the average world temperature has been increasing, probably as a consequence.” [2]

Funding

The following totals are based on original research of public 990 tax forms by DeSmog, combined with archived data from the Conservative Transparency project summarizing ALF‘s funding from 1985 onwards. Note that not all individual funding values have been verified by DeSmog. [7]

View the attached spreadsheet for details on Atlantic Legal Foundation’s Funding by year (.xlsx).

Donor Total
Sarah Scaife Foundation $2,530,000
F.M. Kirby Foundation $652,500
Jaquelin Hume Foundation $300,000
John M. Olin Foundation $210,000
Castle Rock Foundation $80,000
The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation $75,000
Exxon Mobil $30,000
Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation $20,000
Philip M. McKenna Foundation $19,000
ExxonMobil Foundation $9,000
Joyce and Donald Rumsfeld Foundation $4,500
DonorsTrust $100
Grand Total $3,930,100

Other Donors

According to ExxonSecrets, ALF has also received funding from large corporations such as ASARCO, ARCO Chemical Co, Chevron, DuPont, Pfizer, and Texaco.  [4]

990 Forms

Key People

Board of Directors

Name 2007[11] 2008[12] 2009[13] 2010[14] 2011[15] 2013[17] 2014[18] 2015[19] 2017[20] Description
Andrea E. Utecht         Y         Board of Directors
Augustus I. duPont  Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Secretary (2012 to present)
Carol A. Casazza Herman Y                 Board of Directors
Charles R. Work Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors, Former Secretary
Clifford B. Storms Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
David E. Wood     Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Treasurer (2011 to present)
Donald M. Gray Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Douglas Foster Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Vice Chairman
Edwin L. Lewis Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Elia Weinbach  Y                 Board of Directors
Ernest B. Hueter  Y Y Y             Board of Directors
Ernest T. Patrikis Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Francis B. Burch, Jr. Y                 Board of Directors
Frank H. Menaker Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Frank R. Jimenez         Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Frederick Seitz Y                 Board of Directors
George S. Frazza Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Gregory J. Morrow      Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Hayward D. Fisk Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Chairman, Acting President (2016 to present)
James I. Wyer Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Chairman Emeritus
Jay B. Stephens         Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Jeffrey S. Sherman   Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Joe G. Hollingsworth     Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Marcy S. Cohen         Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Nevin Sanli         Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
Nicolas Morgan              Y Y   Board of Directors
Philip R. Sellinger  Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
R. William Ide Y Y Y Y Y         Board of Directors
Robert A. Lonergan Y Y Y Y Y Y Y     Board of Directors
Robert E. Juceam Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Robert L. Haig Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Stephen J. Harmelin Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors, Former Treasurer
Thomas E. Birsic         Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Thomas L. Sager Y Y Y Y Y Y       Board of Directors
Tracy A. Bacigalupo         Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors
Victoria P. Rostow Y Y Y Y           Board of Directors
Vincent A. Maffeo         Y Y       Board of Directors
William B. Lytton Y Y Y             Board of Directors
William G. Primps    Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   Board of Directors
William Graham Y Y Y Y Y Y       Board of Directors
William H. Slattery Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y   President (until 2016)
William P. Cook         Y Y Y Y Y Board of Directors

Foundation Officers

Name 2007[11] 2015[19] 2016[23] 2017[24] Description
Briscoe R. Smith Y Y     Senior Vice President and Counsel
Hayward D. Fisk     Y Y Chairman; Acting President (2016 to present)
Martin S. Kaufman Y Y Y Y Senior Vice President and General Counsel
William H. Slattery Y Y     President (until 2016)

Advisory Council

Name 2007[11] 2008[12] 2009[13] 2010[14] 2011[15] 2012[16] 2013[17] 2015[19] 2016[21] 2017[22]
A. Alan Moghissi Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
A. F. Spilhaus, Jr.   Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Adam Offenhartz Y Y Y Y Y Y        
Alan Charles Raul Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Albert W. Driver Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Alfred L. Ferguson Y                  
Arthur F. Fergenson Y                  
Barry H. Smith Y                  
Briscoe R. Smith                  Y Y
C. Thomas Harvie Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Charles M. Elson Y Y Y Y Y Y Y      
Charles W. Mooney, Jr. Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
David C. Apy Y Y Y Y Y Y Y      
Dennis McBride Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Frederick T. Elder Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
George E. Ehrlich  Y Y Y Y Y Y Y      
Hamilton Osborne, Jr. Y Y Y Y            
Hayward D. Fisk                 Y Y
Henry N. Butler Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Hung Cheung Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
John H. Carley Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
John J. Calandra   Y Y Y Y Y Y      
John Kenney Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Lance H. Wilson Y Y Y Y   Y Y Y Y Y
Michael S. Nadel             Y Y Y Y
Michael X. McBride     Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Ozgur Ozkan Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Patricia Buffler Y Y Y Y Y Y Y      
Patrick Sheller               Y    
Paul C. Rooney, Jr. Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Philip S. Guzelian Y                  
Prof. Charles M. Elson               Y    
Prof. Richard Wilson                 Y Y
R. Edwin Selover Y Y Y              
Richard A. Hauser Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Richard Wilson Y Y Y Y   Y Y Y    
Robert Gold Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Rodney W. Nichols Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Roger S. Kaplan Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Ronald E. Gots Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Sam Scott Miller Y Y Y Y Y          
Stephen T. Whelan Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Susan L. Meade Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Thomas R. Gottshall Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y    
Thor Halvorssen Y Y Y Y Y Y        
Victoria P. Rostow       Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
William G. Primps Y Y Y Y Y   Y      

Actions

December 1, 2014

The ALF filed an amicus brief on behalf of a couple that purchased property in Connecticut who were mired in legal battles with the Army Corps Engineers over the portion of their land that is considered publicly-owned wetlands. The amicus brief was summarized on the ALF‘s site: [25]

“Our brief highlights and puts a human face on the barriers and frustrations faced by landowners whose property is deemed to contain jurisdictional wetlands by either the Army Corps of Engineers or the EPA.” [25]

November 25, 2014

The ALF filed extensive comments in which it critiqued the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule titled “Waters of the United States Under the Clean Water Act, 79 Fed. Reg. 22188, et seq.”

The ALF included the following summary of its comments on its website: [26]

“The issue of federal wetlands jurisdiction is controversial because it enables two federal agencies, EPA and the Corps, which have concurrent Clean Water Act enforcement jurisdiction, to extensively and intensively regulate land use down to individual lots, and, in effect, to override local zoning and land use regulation and to use their permitting process to micro-manage development on private land throughout the country, even in areas that are not, at least in the common-sense meaning, wetlands.” [26]

“The Foundation’s comments on the Proposed Rule assert that EPAs proposed rule is unreasonably broad, rendering virtually all water bodies with few exceptions subject to the jurisdiction of the USACE and the EPA and that it conflicts with the more concrete and limited plurality test in Rapanos.” [26]

October 25, 2006 

The ALF filed an amicus brief (PDF), to the United States Supreme Court in Commonwealth of Massachusetts, et al. v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). [2][5]

Where states and environmental activist organizations were asking the court to order the EPA to regulate some greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act, ALF‘s brief argues that regulating automobiles’ CO2 emissions is not only ineffective in attempting to control global concentrations of “greenhouse gases,” but it also may have an economic cost that far exceeds alternatives. [6]

Atlantic Legal Foundation Contact & Location 

As of January 30, 2017, the main contact address was: [9]

500 Mamaroneck
Suite 320
Harrison, NY 10528 USA

(914) 834-3322

Related Organizations

Resources

  1. About Us,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived March 15, 2016. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/0BK68

  2. Amicus Brief (PDF) of COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS, ET AL., PETITIONERS, v. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, ET AL., RESPONDENTS. No. 05-1120. October 26, 2006. Archived.pdf on file at DeSmog.

  3. Atlantic Legal Foundation,” Media Matters. Accessed January, 2012.

  4. ExxonSecrets Factsheet: Atlantic Legal Foundation, ALF.

  5. Atlantic Legal Foundation Files Amicus Brief with Supreme Court in Important Environmental Case,” Atlantic Legal Foundation, October 25, 2006. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/o3CT8

  6. Atlantic Legal Foundation Files Amicus Brief in Important Environmental Case in the Supreme Court,” The Free Library.

  7. Atlantic Legal Foundation,” Conservative Transparency. Search performed January 26, 2017.

  8. William Pentland. “Climate Skeptic: Non-Consensus Science Is Likely Junk,” Forbes, October 23, 2011.

  9. “Atlantic Legal Foundation New Address,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived February 4, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/gi40c

  10. Atlantic Legal Foundation,” Sourcewatch. Accessed January 26, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/J0u49

  11. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived June 7, 2007. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/7b55t

  12. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived May 5, 2008. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/S12NK

  13. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived April 30, 2009. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/CMFuD

  14. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived Jan 29, 2010. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/04BOW

  15. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived July 25, 2011. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/VyzG7

  16. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived May 12, 2012. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/61QOK

  17. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived June 2, 2013. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/p6t5A

  18. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived June 30, 2014. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/uIk0l

  19. Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived April 5, 2015. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/a2fAN

  20. ALF Leadership,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived January 27, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/9GRvK

  21. Advisory Council,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived March 15, 2016. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/4jjby

  22. Advisory Council,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived January 27, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/XrSYG

  23. Atlantic Legal Foundation Officers,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived January 18, 2016. Archive.is URL: http://archive.is/0IlOo

  24. Atlantic Legal Foundation Officers,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived January 27, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/hgsbR

  25. Jurisdictional Determinations and the Clean Water Act,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived March 15, 2016. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/6qlAf

  26. Foundation Files Comments on Proposed EPA Rule on Federal Wetlands Jurisdiction,” Atlantic Legal Foundation. Archived October 12, 2016. Archive.is URL: http://archive.is/aJtqE

  27.  John Stauber. Sheldon Rampton. “The Junkyard Dogs of Science,” PR Watch, Fourth Quarter 1998, Volume 5, No. 4. Archived March 11, 2013. Archive.is URL: http://archive.is/8qpHS#selection-893.0-893.36

  28. A. Alan Moghissi,” DeSmog. Last revision February 9, 2016. 

  29. Rodney W. Nichols,” DeSmog. Last revision January 28, 2017.

  30.  Rod Nichols. Will Happer. “The Supreme Court sided with science against Obama,” New York Post, February 15, 2016. Archived September 14, 2016. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/SGu0y

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