The Koch brothers — the billionaire fossil fuel executives who have funneled billions of dollars to block action on climate change — are trying to court Latinos through a new organization called the LIBRE Initiative. But when you hear what they’re saying, you’ll know they don’t have Latinos’ best interests in mind.
The LIBRE Initiative is going from community to community spreading misinformation about climate change and attacking the EPA’s Clean Power Plan. They claim to be helping our communities, but LIBRE’s end goal is contrary to the health and well-being of Latino families — and harmful to the future of our planet. We must set the record straight.
If enough people get the word out, we’ll be able to counter LIBRE’s false claims about the environment and their opposition to policies that are beneficial to Latino communities. Will you help us expose the LIBRE Initiative?
The LIBRE Initiative is just another polluter attempt to obscure the facts about climate change and hurt our communities! Sign the petition to fight back against the Koch brothers and their misleading LIBRE Initiative.>>
At first sight, LIBRE seems like a service-oriented organization, sponsoring all sorts of events, from local festivals to driver’s education classes, and assisting people with immigration applications. But their communications strategy and growing operations in eight key states show that the LIBRE Initiative is actually playing a longer political game — attacking and opposing policies that benefit Latino communities, like environmental protections, minimum wage increases, President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, and the Affordable Care Act. They obscure the facts and make claims about economic freedom and individual liberties while attempting to turn Latinos away from the real policies that are helping our families, and our nation as a whole, every day.
Of course, as a Koch-backed group, it’s no surprise they also oppose the Clean Power Plan — our biggest step forward in the fight against climate change. A LIBRE national spokeswoman has called the Clean Power Plan “dangerous” and the organization has promoted a bogus study claiming negative economic impacts of the EPA’s climate action. The truth is that the Clean Power Plan will create tens of thousands of jobs — especially in the clean energy industry — while saving thousands of lives by reducing asthma attacks, and lowering electricity bills for families in the long run. Just last week, a new poll showed that Latinos feel that combating pollution is just as important as immigration reform and economic recovery. With strong sentiments like this, it’s clear LIBRE is out of touch with — and misleading — Latino communities.
We know that Latinos need to be leaders in deciding how New Mexico implements the Clean Power Plan. New Mexico’s Latino communities are disproportionately impacted by carbon pollution and a strong state plan will bring about a shift away from our reliance on dirty energy sources, like coal and nuclear.
What’s really dangerous is the message of the LIBRE Initiative. While cozying up to the Latino community, the Koch brothers are pretending to have our communities’ interests at heart when it’s clear they really only care about undermining environmental safeguards and padding their own profits. Will you help us counter the LIBRE Initiative’s message? The more we get the facts out about LIBRE, the better off our communities will truly be with a healthier outlook and a more just future.
It’s important to get out the truth about who’s behind the LIBRE Initiative. We must speak out for strong climate action, and stop polluters from spreading misinformation among Latino communities right here in New Mexico.
By CVNMEF Board Member Oriana Sandoval