White House still listening to Van Jones 'green' advice
Communist-group founder on team influencing environmental policies
Van Jones, President Obama's controversial former "green jobs" czar, serves on the advisory board of an independent environmental organization actively working with the White House, WND has learned.
Jones resigned in September after it was exposed he founded a communist revolutionary organization and signed a statement that accused the Bush administration of possible involvement in the 9/11 attacks.
Jones is one of 20 advisers to the University of Colorado–based Presidential Climate Action Project, or PCAP, which draws up climate-policy recommendations for the White House and has been working with members of the Obama administration.
The PCAP last September released a lengthy proposal to guide the environmental policies during the first 100 days of the 44th U.S. president regardless of whether Obama or Sen. John McCain won the election.
William S. Becker, the PCAP's executive director, confirmed to WND his group is "about to propose a new and more assertive strategy for President Obama to raise the bar on the U.S. climate goal, with or without Congress."
Becker told WND his group's initial proposals have received a "very positive reception from the moment we delivered (the 100-day proposal) last November to John Podesta, co-chair of Obama's transition team."
"We continue to work with some colleagues inside the (Obama) administration, as well as continuing to push for bold action from the outside," he said.
Becker said the White House "adopted quite a few of our recommendations or variations of them."
He cited a few examples of the influence of the PCAP and other environmental groups on Obama's policies:
The PCAP recommended that the U.S. reach a bilateral climate deal with China prior to the upcoming U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. The U.S. has since signed several agreements with China to share technology that reduces greenhouse-gas emissions.
The PCAP recommended an executive order that removed the gags from federal climate scientists. This became one of Obama's first actions on environmental policy.
The PCAP recommended an overhaul of federal energy management to beef up efficiency requirements for federal agencies and to restore absolute carbon reduction targets that had been rescinded by the Bush administration. The Obama administration issued a new federal energy management order in October, including a requirement that agencies develop absolute targets for greenhouse-gas reductions.
The PCAP recommended (as did many others) that the Environmental Protection Agency embrace California's vehicle emission standards and begin the process of regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act. The EPA is doing both.
The PCAP recommended major budget increases for states and communities to engage in energy and climate actions and to weatherize the homes of low-income families. This was part of Obama's stimulus package.
The PCAP describes itself as seeking to engage the "best thinking of America's leaders in government, science and civil society to identify actions that will empower all elements of society to meet the challenges of energy security and climate change." The group actively promotes the theory of global warming. http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=117548