Burn More Coal

Burn More Coal (BMC)

Background

Burn More Coal (BMC) is an activist shareholder group founded by JunkScience.com publisher Steve Milloy and Heartland Institute senior fellow Fred Palmer. Milloy previously worked for Murray Energy Corp., one of the largest coal producers in the United States, and Palmer held top positions at Peabody Energy Corporation and the Western Fuels Association. BMC began posting on its website, BurnMoreCoal.com, on October 22, 2018. [1], [11]

According to their website, Burn More Coal is a “pro-coal electric utility shareholder activist group dedicated to promoting the increased use of coal as a fuel for electricity generation.” [1]

The mission of Burn More Coal is to purchase and control shares in the nation’s largest electric utility companies. This leverage would allow BMC to pressure CEOs and boards of directors to increase their coal burning portfolios and slow or halt the transition to renewables. BMC’s stated intent is to “Make Coal Cool Again.” [1]

Burn More Coal cites the EPA’s 2009 CO2 endangerment finding and the later Clean Power Plan, enacted under President Obama, as pivotal events in the ‘war-on-coal.’ Electric utilities subsequently began to transition away from coal burning power plants and towards renewable sources of electricity generation. From the perspective of BMC, this transition will be harmful to shareholders, ratepayers, and the environment. The BMC manifesto is “Electricity is life. Coal is electricity.” [2][3]

BMC owns shares in electric utility companies that have pledged to reduce or eliminate coal burning while investing in renewables. As of December 2018, BMC owned shares of the following electric utilities: [4]

Stance on Climate Change

While acknowledging that the burning of coal increases CO2 emissions, BMC believes that:

…the planet has not warmed anywhere near that predicted in 1978. According to satellite data collected since 1979, the Earth has been warming at a miniscule average rate of 0.13 degree C per decade, well within natural variability.

The Earth itself has been greening with desert turning to grasslands, grasslands to forest and biomass cover for increased animal life. And of course, social development and increase in standard of living through coal electricity is as needed today as it was when coal plant construction was prioritized during the 1975-1985 period.” [2]

BMC also states that increased CO2 emissions are good for the planet:

“When coal is burned in a power plant, colorless and odorless carbon dioxide (CO2) is emitted. CO2 is plant food that is essential for life on Earth. Coal-fired power plants and other sources that burn coal/oil/gas/biomass are increasing the level of CO2 in the atmosphere. Plants that grow in environments with more CO2, grow more.” [2]

Funding

BMC accepts donations via PayPal and credit card on their website and offer coffee mugs for donations over $50. They also accept control by proxy of privately held electric utility stock. [5]

Key People

Founders (2018) [1]

Actions

November 25, 2018

Interviewed for a New York Times article about the Trump Administration’s disputation of the federal government’s own National Climate Assessment, Burn More Coal’s Steve Milloy was quoted as saying:

We don’t care. In our view, this is made-up hysteria anyway. … Trying to stop the deep state from doing this in the first place, or trying to alter the document, and then creating a whole new narrative — it’s better to just have it come out and get it over with. … But do it on a day when nobody cares, and hope it gets swept away by the next day’s news.” [6]

November 16, 2018

BMC filed a shareholder proposal with Exelon Corp. in the form of a “Greenwashing Audit,” requesting cost/benefit analysis to “shareholders, public health and the environment” from the company’s divestiture from coal. The proposal states:

Exelon has divested from coal and, according to its web site, is investing in a “cleaner energy future,” apparently in hopes of altering global climate change. No law or regulation requires that Exelon take this action.” [7]

November 12, 2018

The group filed a shareholder proposal with Duke Energy demanding an economic justification for the planned decommissioning of some of Duke’s coal plants:

What will be the actual benefit to anyone or anything of it? Global CO2 emissions are higher now than ever and increasing.” [7]

The move came as Duke plans to retire 14 coal plants by 2020 to comply with federal and state environmental regulations and under pressure from low natural gas prices and increasing demand for renewable energy. [8]

In an interview with The Daily Caller, Fred Palmer said:

There is a cabal in the utility industry that wants to decarbonize independent of federal policy. It’s as if Al Gore were running the utility industry.” [8]

October 22, 2018

Burn More Coal announced its formation with the following statement:

We love coal. Beautiful clean coal. We want electric utilities to drop their foolhardy anti-coal political correctness so they can burn more coal to power our economy, raise our standard of living, secure our nation and set an example for the rest of the world.” [9]

Contact & Address

Burn More Coal, LLC does not list a physical contact location on its website. According to information filed at the state of Delaware, Burn More Coal was registered by the Corporation Services Company located at: [10] 

251 Little Falls Drive

Wilmington, DE 19808

302-636-5401

Social Media

Resources

  1. About,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/GjKB6
  2. CO2/Climate/Air,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.fo/tcmk4
  3. Manifesto,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.fo/QrDEG
  4. Portfolio,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.fo/dobTW
  5. Donate,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.fo/yx9ca
  6. Coral Davenport. “Trump Administration’s Strategy on Climate: Try to Bury Its Own Scientific Report,” New York Times, November 25, 2018. Archived November 25, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/upESh
  7. Utilities,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.fo/6wLG4
  8. Michael Bastasch. “Utility Shareholders Fight To Keep Us Coal Fleet From Disappearing,” The Daily Caller, November 13, 2018. Archived November 14, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/dDzlq
  9. Home,” Burn More Coal. Archived December 4, 2018. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/G0u96
  10. “Burn More Coal, LLC.” Corporate Filing, State of Delaware, Department of State, Division of Corporations. Accessed December 5, 2018. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog. 
  11. Homepage, BurnMoreCoal.com. Archived December 5, 2018. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/G0u96

Other Resources

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