by D. Godefridi, Mar 15, 2022 in GatestoneInstitute
- “I have met allies who can report that Russia, as part of their sophisticated information and disinformation operations, engaged actively with so-called non-governmental organisations – environmental organisations working against shale gas – to maintain European dependence on imported Russian gas.” — NATO’s then Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, The Guardian, June 19, 2014.
- The mechanism, which can be summarized as follows: “Funds from the Russian government -> Shell company ‘incorporated’ in Bermuda -> American foundation -> American environmental organizations.” The advantage of Bermuda is that it does not require any disclosure that funds come from a foreign government, contrary to American law. Sea Change must disclose that it has received funds from abroad — in this instance a Bermuda company. Nothing more.
- On March 11, 2022, US Representatives Jim Banks and Bill Johnson sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, asking for an investigation into the reported Russian manipulation of American “green groups” that are seemingly funded with “dark money” (anonymous donations). “Russia spent millions promoting anti-energy policies and politicians in the U.S. … Unlike the Russia hoax, Putin’s malign influence on our energy sector is real and deserves further investigation,” Banks said to Fox News Digital.
- Below Europe’s soil lie large reserves of shale gas, also known as bedrock gas. The exploitation of these European natural gas reserves would have substantially reduced Europe’s purchases of, and dependence on, Russia’s gas — in particular on its gas giant, Gazprom. The same is true of nuclear power, which offers Westerners an abundant, non-CO2-emitting energy source as an alternative to Russian gas.
- Hence the interest, for the Russian government, in mounting a vast disinformation campaign against shale gas and nuclear power in the West, by massively financing the groups most likely “naturally” to oppose it: environmentalist organizations.