Bill McKibben is not what he seems to be – I catch him in a lie

Bill McKibben, by Jennifer Esperanza

Bill McKibben, by Jennifer Esperanza (Photo credit:

While Bill McKibben tries to portray himself as just a concerned citizen out to change the world due to his fears of global warming, by running a “grassroots organization”, the reality is he’s quite well funded by the rich, as this investigation reveals.

From the Financial Post:

Nothing influences President Barack Obama’s decision on the Keystone XL pipeline quite like the protests against it, led by Bill McKibben, an American environmentalist, and his organization, called On Wednesday, and the Sierra Club participated in an anti-Keystone protest at the White House and this Sunday they are holding another one on Capital Hill. They expect 20,000 people from across the United States. has the look and feel of an amateur, grassroots operation, but in reality, it is a multi-million dollar campaign run by staff earning six-digit salaries.

More than half of the US$10-million came from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF), the Rockefeller Family Fund and the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy, where McKibben, a trustee, was paid US$25,000 per year (2001-09). Since 2007, the Rockefellers have paid US$4-million towards 1Sky and, tax returns say. The Schumann Center provided US$1.5-million to McKibben’s three campaigns as well as US$2.7-million to fund the Environmental Journalism Program at Middlebury College, in Vermont, where McKibben is on staff.

Full story here:


From above:

…the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy, where McKibben, a trustee, was paid US$25,000 per year (2001-09).

Wikipedia’s surprisingly light entry describes it as:

The Schumann Center for Media and Democracy (formerly The Florence and John J. Schumann Jr. Foundation) was established in 1961, by Florence Ford and John J.Schumann Jr. The foundation states that its purpose is to renew the democratic process through cooperative acts of citizenship, especially as they apply to governance and the environment.

That last sentence is all over the web as being in their mission statement.

Doing my own checking to see if they funded, I see they did.:



Checking other IRS documents I note the one for 2008:

They state quite a bit of money for Environmental causes:


It seems clear to me by their mission statement and IRS filing that they are an “environmental” organization.

And doing further checking to see if in fact this funder of environmental causes paid McKibben, I find that to be true:


The amount of money he was paid isn’t much, and certainly nothing to get too worked up about, I wouldn’t have given it much thought by itself. Note also Bill Moyers of PBS, no wonder he is so biased, he’s a paid to represent and direct an environmental organization. Surely, this must be a conflict of interest? Or maybe it is just business as usual with PBS? The amount of screaming about my appearance on PBS last year makes more sense now.

But, even though the amount of compensation McKibben received is small. I have to wonder why Bill took exception to being called a “paid political activist” in this WUWT post and went to the trouble to email me a statement that he’s an “unpaid political activist” and never took any money from “any other environmental group”?

Here is his email to me the same day as the WUWT post about him:


I took him at his word then, and made a change to the post, but now, clearly, he has told me a lie.

I’m sure from his interpretation of facts, he doesn’t think so, but that’s an ongoing problem with Bill, as his interpretation of facts about global warming are a self distortion to suit his purposes. It’s a typical case of noble cause corruption that blinds him to his own lies.


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Big D in TX

The Rockefellers, eh?
Bill McKibben/, paid by “BIG OIL” to spread their lies to the public… sound familiar to anyone else?

Gene Selkov

His statement may have been statistically correct. A penny, or 2,500,000 pennies — who cares? It is below noise level for anybody as important. The truth is probably bigger than this little lie by an order of magnitude.

Chris B

When I saw the nasme Bill Moyers on the above documents I thought it was a coincidental name. Yikes. Surely he states his bias on any of the work he does? If not this would be a huge scandal were there not so many like-minded believers.


It is amusing to learn that those who scream that skeptics are all funded by “Big Oil” are guilty of that which they accuse there perceived adversaries. The current generation of Rockefellers are themselves the recipients of the largess created by their ancestor John D. Rockefeller, who was the founder CEO, Chairman of the Board and majority shareholder of Standard Oil. Sure sounds like Big Oil money to me.

Chris B

How many little, $25,000 dollar envelopes does it take to buy the right “facts”?

Louis Hooffstetter

Also note the two donations to “media” of $1.5 and $3.4 million dollars.
While listening to PBS, how many times have you heard “Made possible by a grant from the Florence and John J. Schumann Jr. Foundation”?
Both Moyers and PBS are clearly tainted.

Rob Dawg

$635 for expenses seems suspiciously low. If 350 dot org is paying for his travel and accommodations it isn’t being reported correctly.


I suppose when you are engaged on a *noble cause* the end always justifies the means. Certainly within their world that seems to be the norm just ask Peter .
Doesn’t mean we should trust them though.


Can we conclude then that the Rockefellers have no financial interest in the Keystone project but indeed have all the incentive to see it halted?
The pot calling the kettle McKibben.

Mark and two Cats

The left are adept liars. One of the financial contributors listed is Institute for Local Self-Reliance. Self reliance is certainly not something the left promulgates; they want the populace beholden to and reliant upon government.
Betcha the title of that organisation is as truthful as Orwell’s Ministry of Truth. Feh!
Now the Ministry of Silly Walks – I could get in step with that!


Bill McKibben may not be what he says he is, but I’d say he is EXACTLY what he seems to be…

Kurt in Switzerland

Can’t wait to see Mr. McKibben try to dig his way out of the hole he’s dug.
Kurt in Switzerland

Citizen Skippy

[snip. We don’t use the d-word here. — mod.]

Michael Jankowski

$25k for 10 hrs/week? Being paid the equivalency of $100k for a full-time work is “never taken a penny?”

Alberta Slim

So, then what IS his source of income?
Is he independently wealthy?
Just curious.

David S

He is making a fine distinction between being paid by an environmental group and being paid by a billionaire’s family trust that in turn funds environmental groups. Strictly speaking, that is not a lie, it is just intentionally misleading.

Fred from Canuckistan

This is all normal for the enviro industry.
If you don’t know Vivian Krause . . .
She has bee exposing the financing of the scam up here in Canuckistan.


Always wondered how “grassroots” protests could afford the elaborate displays that are used to vilify those things that they disagree with. When they were marching around carrying the faux pipeline, my first thought was “that doesn’t look cheap”. I wondered if Daryl Hannah paid for it herself. But then – the “dedicated” environmentalists probably held bake sales and garage sales to scrape up the pennies. There appear to be no limits to the streatching of the truth.


Keep digging … look for paid tavel, paid conventions, paid speaking engagements, paid phone bills, paid laptops & smart phones, a company car, office space provided etc etc

Keith W.

$25,000 for a job that averages ten hours per week? Assuming two weeks of uncompensated vacation, that would translate to $500 per hour. Where do I sign up for that sort of compensation?


The Rockefeller’s funneled money to the Bolsheviks during the revolution. They have a history of funding radical Statists and control freaks.

Richard Sharpe

A late friend of mine, in order to ensure he heard only unbiased voices, viewed and listened to only “non-commercial” sources, such as the CBC here in Canada, and the BBC, PBS and, yes, even al-Jazeera. He literally had his TV programmed to receive only these channels. Unfortunately, even this revelation would not make him turn over in his grave, unburdened as he was by “bias”…

David S

Keith you have the zero in the wrong place. It is $50 per hour, and they are getting good value as he is a very effective publicist with few scruples.

Bruce Cobb

It’s like the famous bank robber Willie Sutton said, when asked why he robbed banks; “because that’s where the money is”.
Global warming alarmism is a multi-$billion industry with multiple ways people can get in on the action, as long as they don’t mind setting aside ethics and moral scruples.


If you go back to the early days of all this, you see a Rockefeller man in the United Nations, Maurice Strong, starting the IPCC. He has since fled to China because he got caught siphoning off profits from Iraqui Oil revenue when they were under sanctions.
You have to wonder if Big Oil is driving this issue, because their biggest opponent to cheap energy is Coal.


I wonder how much McKibben is paid for speaking engagements, lectures, round-table engagements, appearances, and the like from many of these same well-funded environmental agencies?
Not that I have anything about making a good living, but to cry poverty and claim grass-roots origins when there is a constant flow of cash is a bit much.
Just wondering…

Tom H

The Rockefeller Trust is not “oil” money but perhaps atonement for the elder’s environmental sins?

Curious Canuck

Vivian Krause .. The Girl Who Played with Tax Data … Her focus, funding, differs from M&M but she has had a powerful impact and stands with them as deliberately ignored giants in the fight for honest debate.
Exposing Suzuki, her Parliamentary testimony, investigations and audits into how charities are behaving in their political involvement vis a vis the laws on such. Exposing the pipelines (pun intended) of billionaire foundation money being funneled into Canada to make energy infrastructure development as hard as it is here as it is south of the border.
I have little doubt that it also doubles to benefit certain places, people and causes. Like Illinois industry, in Barry and Rahm’s, stomping grounds having to take on that dirty (why, as dirty as Cali oil), stranded Canadian oil for $40 off the market price or whatnot.
Vivian Krause carries the torch. She showed us a whole other, uglier, Canada-US relationship that like it or not is part of the reality and that knowledge is power. Hats off to Financial Post for bringing her to broad public attention in Canada and WUWT extending it to beyond.

I also notice here:
Our Sources
In addition to individual contributions,’s work was supported by the following foundations in Fiscal Year 2011:
Artists Project Earth
Arntz Family Foundation
Binnacle Family Foundation
Changing Horizons Fund
Chorus Foundation
Clif Bar Family Foundation
Flora Family Fund
Fullerton Family Foundation
Gould Family Foundation
Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment
HKH Foundation
Janelia Foundation
The Kendeda Fund
Lewis Family Foundation
The Libra Foundation
Mason Hirst Foundation
Mental Insight Foundation
Mertz Gilmore Foundation
The Minor Foundation for Major Challenges
Namaste Foundation
Oak Foundation
One Percent Foundation
The Overbrook Foundation
Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Rockefeller Family Fund
Schumann Media Center
Swift Foundation
V. Kann Rasmussen Foundation
William B. Wiener, Jr. Foundation
Working Assets/CREDO Fund of the Tides Foundation
That last one from Tides Foundation is a biggie. Tides was created to allow large individual donors and foundations to “launder” donations. Lets say you want to donate to but having your name appear directly on their donor list might cause some trouble because you want to be viewed as neutral on the issue and don’t want to appear to have any stake in that particular issue. What you do is make a donation to Tides and earmark your donation to What Tides then does is bundles up your donation along with others who have also earmarked theirs and maybe tosses in some of their own general fund money and makes a donation to 350 shows a donation from Tides but the donation is not the same amount and is not at the same time as your donation to Tides. Tides shows your donation but are not required to show how you “earmarked” it.
Now dig into this link:
And notice this: ” The 1Sky communications strategy was created by Fenton Communications, the nation’s ‘foremost media/communications firm’ for the non-profit industrial complex. ” Now we start to see the “usual suspects” … Fenton Communications is generally not far removed from “grass roots” organizations with big money backing, particularly when you see Tides Foundation involved.
Look at who is a “Guest Trainer” for “Green Corps”:
Notice this page:
Find Fenton under “Pro Bono Donors” and notice in the upper right corner the notice of: “Find out more about this exciting 1Sky/ merger and how you can stay involved with the climate movement at”
There’s a link to this video:
You have to now look at the money from 1Sky in addition to … they are now the same organization in reality but will use different names when it suits them.
Fenton Communications pioneered the use of creating several different names for what amounts to a single organization. You create a national organization that is based around an issue. You give each small cell a different name. That gives the impression that several different “grass roots” organizations are all different and sprung up independently. It gives the impression that their stance on an issue has more popular support than it actually does.
This is all smoke and mirrors, people. It is all part of the massive “progressive” public relations illusion.

Richard Keen

I see that so-called FAIR, “Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting”, got $150K from the Rockies. They’re the ones who publicized the “Balance is Bias” meme of the Boykoff Bros. (now on the faculty at Colorado) that attempts to justify censorship of the skeptical viewpoint.
Journalistic Balance as Global Warming Bias
Creating controversy where science finds consensus
By Jules Boykoff and Maxwell Boykoff

kadaka (KD Knoebel)

Citizen Skippy said on February 15, 2013 at 9:32 am:

[Link to Gauriand smear piece]
Not sure where to post this, but apparently denialists are well funded according to The Guardian.

Could have left it back where it was already mentioned, as found on the main WUWT page:
Boxer’s carbon tax proposal would enrich people already feeding from the public trough… meanwhile Suzanne Goldenberg bags her journalism skills

And for the sake of being complete, here is the full list of donors to 1Sky which is the same as at this point:
Foundation Donors
1Sky gratefully acknowledges the support of its many foundation donors, including:
Argosy Foundation
Arntz Family Foundation
The Betsy and Jesse Fink Foundation
Better Tomorrow Fund
Bellwether Foundation
Changing Horizons Fund
Chorus Foundation
Connect US Fund
Craig McKibben & Sarah Merner Foundation
The Educational Foundation of America
Energy Foundation
Fairfield County Community Foundation
Friedman Fund of Tides Foundation
Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment
Harambe Foundation
HKH Foundation
Janelia Foundation
Kirsch Foundation
Lang Family Foundation
Libra Foundation
MacArthur Foundation
Marisla Foundation
Mertz Gilmore Foundation
Nathan Cummings Foundation
New York Community Trust
Overbrook Foundation
Peter Lewis Family Foundation
Quixote Foundation
Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund
Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Rockefeller Family Fund
Scherman Foundation
Sidney Frank Foundation
Stoneman Family Foundation
Surdna Foundation
Threshold Foundation
Town Creek Foundation
Wallace Global Fund
Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation
Become an Individual Donor
We also thank the many individual donors who make our work possible. You make a tax-deductible, online donation to 1Sky and help support the call for a clean energy future.
Pro Bono Donors
1Sky is deeply grateful to the following organizations and individuals for their pro bono contributions to the campaign:
Fenton Communications
Harmon, Curran, Spielberg & Eisenberg, LLP
Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation
Robert Gass
The Foundation
Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
Zanby, LLC
Ben Sekulowicz-Barclay, Flickrshow
Social media icons are created by, or based on work by, Chris Wallace and shared under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.
The links to 1Sky annual reports are now 404 so I can’t see them.

Notice McKibben is on the board of directors of 1Sky in 2008-2009 annual report:
Since 1Sky and are the same organization, how much is he taking in under the 1Sky name while claiming he took nothing under the name?

Luther Wu

Citizen Skippy says:
February 15, 2013 at 9:32 am

Pity that you aren’t smart enough to realize how you’ve betray yourself in this public forum.
If your use of the term “denialist” hadn’t branded you as shallow and rather dim, a perusal of the content to which you linked will surely finish you off.

Notice the 2010 donors to 1Sky in this annual report:

And finally:
Rockefellers’ 1Sky Unveils the New More $ — More Delusion
Saturday, April 23, 2011 – 18:01 By Cory Morningstar
World’s Greatest Magic Trick “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” – George Orwell
On 6 April 2011 it was announced that the RINGO (Rockefeller initiated NGO) 1Sky and their sister organization have ‘officially merged’ into one mass climate movement – the ‘NEW’

Russ R.

Perhaps we should allow Mr. McKibben the opportunity to respond?
He might not have accepted the money personally.

If the Keystone XL pipeline ever gets built and begins to bring cheap oil from the Canadian tar sands down to U.S. markets, the price of oil will drop here. Are some of those protestors perhaps flying a false flag to support the income from their U.S. oil production? Keep gasoline above $3.50/gal instead of having it drop to maybe $2.50/gal? Stop the pipeline that can bring competion with plenty of cheaper oil?

Frank K.

Always remember, “Green Greed is Good”.


There may be far more benefits to Bill than just that $25k…
Digging into’s records could reveal some shadowy perks, like a car, housing subsidy, utility payments, etc….
It’s not uncommon to weasel money from the fund into areas difficult to track. A lot of charities work this way. Like, his wife getting paid, his dog getting paid, the organization buying properties that he can collect the rents from….

Mumbles McGuirk

Looks like snow flurries and near freezing temps for their Sunday rally. Anyone in the DC area want to document their turn out numbers or photograph the global warmists bundled up against the cold? That should prove amusing.


“The foundation states that its purpose is to renew the democratic process through cooperative acts of citizenship, especially as they apply to governance and the environment.”
Sounds pretty, doesn’t say much, unless they mean:
“The foundation states that its purpose is to create an autocratic process through bribed acts of support for our causes, especially as they apply to governance and the environment.”

Reblogged this on Climate Ponderings and commented:
But but but…when you are a “trustee” they don’t call it a “paycheck”…it’s a “stipend” – doncha know. )

Another thing you have to be aware of is how they launder larger salaries by breaking it up and paying smaller amounts from several different organizations that are basically really all the same overall organization (in effect, if not in name). So Joe Blow might get a $25,000 salary from five different “grass roots” organizations that are really all managed by the same people and directed by the same PR agency and funded by the same sources. Notice the overlap you see in the names in directors from one organization to another. Imagine you worked for a large company but every single plant / office of that company operated under a different name. This is basically what goes on in that arena. It is sort of like the old “trusts” and how companies used to operate in the 19th century.

Note also Bill Moyers of PBS, no wonder he is so biased, he’s a paid to represent and direct an environmental organization.

That ain’t the half of it.
Bill Moyers is president of the (Florence and John) Schumann Center for Media and Democracy who fund organisations such as Media Matters for America.
Moyers employed his son-in-law John Passacantando at the Schumann Foundation and assigned him the task of “a grass-roots renewal of democracy”.
Passacantando went on to co-found and direct Ozone Action, which merged with Greenpeace in 2000. Passacantando then became executive director of Greenpeace USA.


The theater of operation for 350 org is something I have been watching. Pakistan, N.Korea, N. Africa etc…

NZ Willy

The “Tides Foundation” as a money-laundering entity to fund leftwing groups, makes one wonder what all money goes into there. Since the Fed is creating money from thin air, surely some of it gets channeled over to Tides etc. I fear that there is a huge money-creating-and-funnelling network which explains all the left’s money, leaving us to blink as deer in headlights.

James Ard

I’m glad to see Moyers is in it for the money. It would be depressing to think he really believes any of the statist blather he spews.

I expect his earnings are high enough, to forget about the odd 25 grand!