In light of Earth Day on April 22nd, The Sierra Club has released a must-read report Polluting Our Democracy And Our Environment that draws out the parallels between big money’s influence in politics and the impact those same interests also have on the environment. It reads,

“For at least the last decade, it has been abundantly clear that the people responsible for polluting our air, our water, and our climate with toxic contamination are many of the same ones responsible for polluting our democracy with hundreds of millions of dollars in toxic money. It is true that big polluters have been spending big in politics for decades, but the research collected here shows that this bad situation has only become worse over time. With millions in corrupting money pouring into the political system, the 113th Congress has pumped out legislation and votes so toxic that it has earned the title of “most anti-environmental” in history. The returns big polluters are getting on these political investments — in the form of billions in corporate tax handouts — exceed 5000 percent, demonstrating that Congress remains the best “investment” possible for the coal, oil, and gas industries.”

You can read the entire report here.

If you’d like to read more about this topic, this op-ed A Clean Environment Depends On Clean Election from Sierra Club Executive Director Micheal Brune, and Jim Frick, who serves on the Executive Committee of the Sierra Club’s Maine Chapter serves as a powerful statement about why we must get big money out of elections to protect the environment.