James Mahoney

James Mahoney


  • Bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from University of Massachusetts. [1][2]


James Mahoney was employed by Koch Industries, Inc. since 1988 where he began his career working for Flint Hills Resources. Now retired, he formerly worked as vice president for operations excellence and compliance and was also a member of the board of directors. [2], [3]

Additionally, Mahoney has served as the chairman of the board for the National Petrochemical and Refineries Association (NPRA), now called the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM). [4]

Mahoney and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers / National Petrochemical Refineries Association

James Mahoney served in several leadership positions on the NPRA board including vice president (2003), vice chairman (2004, 2005) and chairman (2006, 2007), according to website snapshots via the Internet Archive.

He also served as chairman of the board of directors of the AFPM in 2006, 2011, and 2012. He held a variety of positions on the board of AFPM between 2004 and 2015.  The NPRA/AFPM is a national trade association for the petrochemical and refining industries. It has hundreds of members including Exxon Mobil Corporation, Chevron Corporation, BP, Koch Industries, Inc., Valero, Tesoro, Shell Chemical Company and DuPont. [5]

The American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers describes itself as the “trade association representing high-tech American manufacturers of virtually the entire U.S. supply of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, other fuels and home heating oil, as well as the petrochemicals used as building blocks for thousands of vital products in daily life.” [6]

James Mahoney and Fueling U.S. Forward

Mahoney helped develop the now-defunct Fueling U.S. Forward, a Koch-funded campaign designed to tout the benefits of fossil fuels (without ever mentioning the significant negative impacts of burning fossil fuels on air quality, public health or the global climate). As investigative journalist Peter Stone revealed in the Huffington Post in February 2016, James Mahoney and Charlie Drevna teamed up to pitch the concept of launching a pro-petroleum campaign to refining companies Valero and Tesoro and other energy interests. [7]

In his piece, The Kochs Are Plotting A Multimillion-Dollar Assault On Electric Vehicles, Stone wrote that the “fledgling Mahoney and Drevna efforts seem to signal an expansion of Koch-backed drives against subsidies and tax breaks for alternative fuels to the transportation sector, at a time when support may be on the rise in Washington and some states for boosting electric vehicles.” [7]

Stance on Climate Change

April 1, 2016

Writing in a Koch Industries newsletter, Mahoney outlined his views on climate change: [1]

“Do I think the climate is changing? Sure. It always has and always will. The average global temperature is up about eight-tenths of one degree Celsius since 1880.

But overall, the climate change models have been nowhere close to accurate in predicting what our temperatures or climate would do in recent years. In fact, the models have consistently overestimated the effects of increasing CO2.”

March 11, 2008

At the 106th NPRA Annual Meeting held on March 11, 2008, Chairman James Mahoney stated that “any climate change legislation will have a dramatic long-term impact on the entire US economy and should therefore be considered very carefully.  Given the current technology in the refining industry, we have limited options to change greenhouse gas output.” [8]

Mahoney went on to explain that the best method for tackling climate change is to promote an open, competitive, and free market for all of America’s industries. [8]


The AFPM‘s official stance on greenhouse gas regulations as of 2012 was that “AFPM believes that using this 40-year-old law [the Clean Air Act] to control of[sic] greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions threatens our nation’s economic and energy security.” [9]

The AFPM also claimed in its former Policy Position on Environmental Regulations that “we are concerned that EPA and other agencies have at times moved from regulation to overregulation, making unreasonable and often conflicting demands on our members to spend enormous sums to make changes in their manufacturing processes that bring little or no significant environmental or health benefits.” [10]

Key Quotes

April 1, 2016

Writing in a “perspective” piece for a Koch newsletter, Mahoney said: [1]

“Fossil fuels cannot be the enemy if companies truly want to help people in the United States and around the world improve their lives. That’s why Koch Industries will continue to openly and vigorously advocate for affordable and abundant energy chosen by consumers — not government bureaucrats. Others should do the same.” [1]

Key Deeds

August 13, 2016

Charles Drevna first announced Fueling U.S. Forward at the 2016 Red State Gathering and confirmed that the campaign is backed by Koch Industries. DeSmog’s Sharon Kelly attended the event and interviewed Drevna. [11], [12]

It was later revealed that James Mahoney was also helping to lead the effort.  “The fact that Jim Mahoney is leading the effort appears to indicate that this is being driven by the business side of Koch,” said one refining industry source, quoted in Peter Stone’s article at HuffPost. Another source said, “I think they (are) approaching all the major independent refiners.” [7]


Social Media


Apart from the Koch Industries Newsroom, Mahoney does not appear to have authored many publications.


  1. Discovery Newsletter: Perspective, Jim Mahoney,” Koch Newsroom, April 1, 2016. Archived November 25, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.ph/slKdO
  2. Bill Wilson. “Koch announces new leadership,” Wichita Business Journal, January 3, 2006. Archived November 25, 2019. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/5lE2m
  3. Jim Mahoney,” LinkedIn. Accessed November 25, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
  4. Executive Committee Roster,” NPRA. Archived July 6, 2007. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/X3Wmv
  5. Member Directory,” AFPM. Accessed November 25, 2019.
  6. ABOUT AFPM,” American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers. Archived July 29, 2012. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.ph/Q5Zxj
  7. Peter Stone. “The Kochs Are Plotting A Multimillion-Dollar Assault On Electric Vehicles,” HuffPost, February 18, 2016. Archived November 26, 2019. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.ph/jRiYK
  8. “106th NPRA Annual Meeting” (PDF), March 11, 2008. Retrieved from Aspentech.com. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
  9. GREENHOUSE GAS REGULATIONS,” American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers. Archived August 22, 2012. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/SQO1f
  10. ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATIONS,” American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers. Archived July 30, 2012. Archive URL: https://archive.ph/o2Qy7
  11. Sharon Kelly. “New Koch-Funded Group ‘Fueling US Forward’ Aims to Promote the ‘Positives’ of Fossil Fuels,” Desmog, August 14, 2016.
  12. About the Event,” Red State Gathering. Archived October 17, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/S42PT
  13. SCC eFile: Annual Report for Fueling U.S. Forward, Inc (SCC IDF2032714). Archived October 19, 2016. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/GTJf9

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