EXCLUSIVE: Top Biden Bureaucrat Consulted With Eco-Activists To Justify Infusing Social Justice Into Wind Program

EXCLUSIVE: Top Biden Bureaucrat Consulted With Eco-Activists To Justify Infusing Social Justice Into Wind Program

  • April 29, 2024

Nick Pope, Daily Caller

A senior Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) official consulted climate activists about finding legal justification for the agency’s push to get developers to invest in “underserved communities,” according to communications obtained by Protect the Public’s Trust.

Marissa Knodel, a senior adviser at BOEM who formerly worked for eco-advocacy group Earthjustice, sought the advice of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Ocean Conservancy, two environmental activist groups, in 2021. Knodel was looking for a legal explanation as to how encouraging offshore wind developers to invest in “underserved communities” aligns with BOEM’s mission, the discovered emails reveal.

“These records are very revealing about the Biden administration’s grossly disparate treatment of different segments of the energy industry,” Michael Chamberlain, executive director of Protect the Public’s Trust, told the DCNF. “While it appears BOEM was bending over backward working with special interests to try to tie offshore wind to their environmental justice goals, they were simultaneously twisting themselves in knots looking for ways to prohibit those same rules from benefiting oil and gas producers.”

In addition to large volumes of Knodel’s emails, Protect the Public’s Trust was also able to obtain copies of her calendar for 2021 and 2022. Knodel appears to have been scheduled for numerous meetings pertaining to environmental justice, Justice40, diversity, equity, and addressing the concerns of Native American tribes, including those located in regions like the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains.

Some of the meetings on her schedule included June 2021 meetings titled “discuss EJ workplan and committees” and “D&I learning journey – Unconscious Bias,” as well as a July 2021 “ocean climate meeting convened by GreenLatinos.” August 2021 meetings included one titled “inclusion as a risk management strategy” and “Justice 40: covered programs.”

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