Who's to Blame: 12 Politicians and Execs Blocking Progress on Global Warming

Rupert Murdoch, Sarah Palin and the other power brokers putting our future at risk

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Gregory Boyce CEO, <br><em>Peabody Energy</em>
Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty4/12

4. Gregory Boyce CEO,
Peabody Energy

There's no better example of how capitalism profits from overheating the planet than Boyce. As head of the world's largest publicly held coal company, Boyce is the darling of Wall Street, beloved for his crisp management style, nice suits and political muscle. To keep America addicted to coal, Peabody spent $5 million on lobbying last year, ­arguing that any attempt to limit carbon pollution will jack up energy prices and destroy the U.S. economy. But Boyce's concern for America hasn't stopped him from going global with a vengeance, expanding operations in China and Australia, and planning a huge export terminal to ship coal to the Far East. His most self-serving moment came in September, when he unveiled the "Peabody Plan to Eliminate Energy Poverty and Inequality." The greatest global danger, Boyce declared, is "not a future environmental crisis predicted by computer models" but the "human crisis" of 3.6 billion people who lack easy access to electricity. The solution? More coal, which Boyce laughably referred to as "the only sustainable fuel with the scale to meet the primary energy needs of the world's rising populations." It was the kind of statement that made sense back in 1910. A century later, it's a recipe for climate catastrophe.

The Dark Lord of Coal Country

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