Repower America's Snake Oil Awards
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11/16/10 Sarah Curran
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A map of the extent of the BP oil disaster as of May 8, 2010.


photo by Seán Kinane/WMNF

The first annual Snake Oil Awards, hosted by Repower America in St. Petersburg, were full of lies and deceit, corporation corruption and environmental disasters. Repower America spokesperson Blake Williams says the organizations honored in these awards all sold Americans their own brand of snake oil.

“2010 was remarkable year for a number of reasons first we had a number of huge environmental disaster from the BP spill here in Florida to a large oil spill in southwest Michigan to the coal mine disasters in west Virginia and on top of that you had these same sort of industries responsible for these disasters spent untold amounts of money on campaign contributions, lobbying and outside advertisements over this past year our goal was to highlight the accomplishments or non-accomplishments of these industries and what they have done over this past year to block clean energy initiatives.”

Sierra Club representative Phil Compton, who also acted as Master of Ceremonies, says the organizations have worked hard through out the year to obtain such an honor.

“Koch industries, for one, put a lot of money into the failed efforts to roll back California’s move towards clean energy and American Petroleum Institute, a year and a half ago, was going around our state and telling us its safe to drill 3 miles off our beaches and we stood up and said uh-uh, and you know people in Florida got enough sense and BP helped drive that point home but if the American petroleum industry got its way we would have oil well right off our beaches here.”

Other than Koch Industries and American Petroleum, BP, responsible for the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Massey Industries, responsible for the explosion that killed 29 miners earlier this year were all vying for America’s and Florida’s dirtiest corporation.

And the winners are…

An actor portraying BP’s former chair Tony Hayward made an impromptu appearance for their win as Florida’s most dishonest corporation

And Koch Industries took the big prize of the day winning America’s vote for the worst corporation. Repower America took the liberty of preparing a speech of what they thought Koch might say about such an honor.

And award attendees like Jude Bigate say these corporations aren’t the only ones that deserve a taste of their own medicine.

“Our government should also have a bit of that snake oil dosed on because their regulations aren’t stringent enough and the ones they do have aren’t enforced.”

API's spokesperson Carlton Caroll says these awards were a distraction from API's larger focus of creating jobs and energy for the future.

BP, Koch Industries, American Petroleum, and Massey Industries did not return our calls for comment by deadline.

For residents hoping to learn more about what these corporations are doing to our environment, The Sierra Club will hold a gulf oil disaster forum tonight at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus to let residents hear what scientists have to say about the effects of this year’s oil spill on the Gulf of Mexico.

Previous WMNF coverage of BP oil spill

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Snake Oil

Awesome Job Repower America!!