Bearden's Free Energy MEG
Destined For Chapter Eleven
Chapter 11 — A Free Trade Environmental Nightmare
After gouging the State of California with egregious energy prices, Enron then gouged investors and employees as well, all under the diligent eyes of Andersen Consulting, which is now facing criminal charges.
But while Enron was manipulating energy prices for California, the state was also being hammered by a Canadian firm called Methanex because it decided to halt the importation of MTBE, a gasoline additive.
For Californians, MTBE was a well-intentioned mistake that yielded horrific environmental problems. For example, the beaches on California's sunny
coastline became littered with the bodies of dead fish, covered with MTBE-caused sores that ate through their skins. Also, the sickly, disgusting yellowish MTBE foam washed up upon California's beaches.
Alarmed at the environmental impact on its beaches, California decided to take action. After all, it was their state — wrong!
Vanderbilt Legal Brief by Steve Louthan
A Brave New Lochner Era? The Constitutionality of NAFTA Chapter 11
In the eight years since its adoption, NAFTA Chapter 11 has escaped significant scrutiny from academics and journalists alike. However, with the recent filing of
several Chapter 11 expropriation claims involving U.S. states, Chapter 11 has begun to gain some notoriety in the press and sparked at least two legal symposia this past year.
This Note begins by highlighting the recent Methanex Chapter 11 claim involving the State of California.
Methanex, a Canadian chemical manufacturer and importer, claimed
$1.6 billion in damages over California's ban of the chemical MTBE. Despite the EPA's classification of MTBE as a possible carcinogen and an academic study that documented its presence in over ten thousand
groundwater sites, Methanex claimed that California's ban "expropriated" their investment.
Methanex argued it is due just and timely compensation
for this purported expropriation. Moreover, Chapter 11 disputes, by and large, remain closed to public scrutiny because of the rules of international investment arbitration.
It is troubling that the legion of NAFTA attorney negotiators and volumes of legislative history failed to consider any of these problems. Some would argue that
this indicates the veracity of what those on the left would have us believe: NAFTA is the progeny of an insatiable Wall Street vis-à-vis the duplicitous consent
manufacturers on K Street. Though such a thesis is an oversimplification, Chapter 11 breaches state immunity through international arbitration in lieu of any Article
III oversight and can effectively hamstring legitimate state police power actions. With this new check on state police power actions, breach of state immunity, and
express avoidance of Article III oversight, one does wonder how this is anything other than political pork for the international investor class.
The last statement that NAFTA Chapter II is "political pork for the international investor class," portends a terrible battle ahead for the MEG if states wish to
use it for purposes such as generating environmentally friendly power. Or, if they choose to offer tax rebates to those who use MEG generators on their
homes because somewhere outside of America's borders, the MEG will cost the international investor class money and they will not take this lying down.
The game is rigged and has been for years — on behalf of the international investor class.
Friends of the Earth, August 13, 2001
NAFTA Ministers' Interpretation of Chapter 11 Investor Suit Fails to Fix Problems
According to FoE, the interpretation of NAFTA's Chapter 11 on investor rights, recently issued by the trade ministers from the three NAFTA countries (US, Canada and Mexico), fails to fix the serious problems with the
provisions of the agreement. The Chapter 11 rules have been used by multinational investors to sue governments for enacting environmental protections, including a
California ban on a toxic gasoline additive. The NAFTA ministers' agreement--that documents in such cases would be made public—includes a loophole that leaves in place
international arbitration rules that require private investors involved in a case to agree to a document release. In addition, the declaration that a minimum standard of treatment for investors should be applied
based on customary international law is entirely unclear.
Most important, the ministerial interpretation does nothing to address the most controversial element in
Chapter 11, the expropriation provision that amounts to a "regulatory takings" clause allowing private investors to sue when their profits are impaired by environmental
laws. The ministers' statement also says nothing about placing diplomatic checks on such cases.
The operative phrase in the above article is: "Chapter 11, the expropriation provision that amounts to a "regulatory takings" clause allowing private
investors to sue when their profits are impaired by environmental laws."
Now let's apply that to the Methanex Chapter 11 claim involving the State of California.
Environmental News Network, Friday, February 22, 2002
NAFTA's Chapter 11 threatens the environment and democracy
In the United States the assets of property holders are protected by the Fifth Amendment ("... nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just
compensation"). This constitutional safeguard shields parties from direct expropriation, also referred to as takings. If a government wants to build a freeway or
football stadium and your home happens to be in the way, the government can force you out but they have to compensate you for your loss. Chapter 11 recognizes this precedent and goes much further.
Under Chapter 11 the signatory nations are prevented from "directly or indirectly nationaliz[ing] an investment" or taking measures "tantamount to nationalization or
expropriation" (emphasis added), and therein lies the distinction. By expanding government responsibility for compensation beyond direct takings, the architects of Chapter 11 have enabled foreign corporations doing
business in Mexico, Canada, or the United States to seek reimbursement for any government law, rule, or regulation that impinges upon the company's profits. An illustration
of the implications of this seemingly minor alteration of language is a feud between the Methanex Corporation and the state of California.
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Methanex, a Canada-based company, produces methanol, a crucial ingredient in the gasoline additive MTBE. Because MTBE improves air quality by enabling gasoline to
burn cleaner, it was added to fuel in cities throughout the United States. The problem, as California residents soon realized, is that MTBE causes cancer in laboratory
animals. By 1995 MTBE, a chemical almost impossible to remove from groundwater, had infiltrated 30 public water systems in the state. Out of concern for public safety,
the California Legislature authorized the governor to ban MTBE if further testing of the substance confirmed its deleterious health effects. In 1999, after additional
laboratory testing, Gov. Gray Davis authorized the phase out of the chemical.
Faced with the prospect of losing a significant market for one of its products, Methanex sought a remedy to
replace the revenue to be lost to the California ban. It found its answer with Chapter 11. Claiming that Gov. Davis' action amounted to a taking of the company's future profits and market share, Methanex filed suit
against the United States seeking $970 million in compensation. Yet because of rules that are a departure from protections afforded in the United States' courts, California cannot even participate in its own defense.
Simply put, if a Canadian company can use NAFTA to override California's energy and environmental policies to their own benefit, the door is wide open
for harassment actions by the international investor class to impede or even stop the adoption of Tom Bearden's free energy MEG.
Impossible you say? Go ask California what is and is not possible when it comes to NAFTA. They'll tell you that it will be fresh grist for the NAFTA
Chapter Eleven mill and time will prove them right… unless…
Let's Get Behind The MEG Right Now!
The mainstream media in America is controlled by a handful of major corporations who firmly believe that what is good for them is good for
everyone else too! We cannot depend on them to support this technology and push for its adoption. They are simply too controlled by vested interests.
Everyone, let's get to understand this patented technology. Send letters to friends and to your elected representatives. Our only hope is to create public
awareness before the international investor class destroys this wonderful gift to mankind.