Chesapeake Energy

Sierra Club faces gas-cash fallout

Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon

WASHINGTON, DC — “After disclosing the donations [from Chesapeake Energy], the Sierra Club revealed during a national conference call with members on Saturday that it had taken ‘some disciplinary actions’ in 2010 over the handling of the gas donation, [Sierra Club’s Kate] Bartholomew said. Spokeswoman Maggie Kao declined to offer details, telling POLITICO that the group ‘can’t and won’t discuss personnel issues.’

[Sierra Club Executive Director Michael] Brune’s predecessor, Carl Pope, had been especially vocal in promoting gas as an alternative to coal, even making appearances with Chesapeake CEO Aubrey McClendon. (Pope declined to comment last week, writing that he was traveling in India and ‘cannot track this at the moment.’) Some members also thought it telling when the Sierra Club’s top climate attorney, David Bookbinder, resigned in 2010 and went to work for the gas industry.

[Brune] said he didn’t push to disclose the donations two years ago because ‘it would have been the distraction it is now. … I felt it was more important to get an actual gas campaign up and running.'”

— Bob King, Politco

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