Wisconsin

Burke’s New York Fundraiser: Frack The Environment

Policy

Democrat gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke decided to spend her Thursday evening hobnobbing with New York’s 1% at the home of the Co-CEO of Bregal Investments according to a story by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Dan Bice. Media Trackers has learned that Bregal Investments is a European-based holding company with ties to the hydraulic fracturing industry in the U.S.

Burke’s host, Quentin Van Doosselarere, is not only the Co-CEO of Bregal Investment, he also serves on the investment committee for Bregal Energy. Included in the investment portfolio for Bregal Energy is the exploration and energy production company Inflection Energy.

Inflection Energy, which as recently as June of 2012 was receiving additional investments from Van Doosselarere and Bregal Energy, has been at the center of controversy in New York State in recent years. According local reports, in 2012 a group of landowners in Tioga County New York filed a federal lawsuit against the company because it was attempting to forcibly extend land leases on hundreds of acres of land due to New York State’s fracking moratorium.

According to a 2012 press release announcing additional investments by Bregal Energy in Inflection Energy:

“In addition, once the moratorium on high volume hydraulic fracturing is lifted in New York, Inflection will be able to bring best in class technology to the region, enabling responsible development of those resources.”

A 2013 New York Times article further elaborates that Inflection Energy had drilled in New York by conventional methods but had hoped to expand into hydraulic fracking until the state’s moratorium stopped those efforts.

According to a 2010 Surface Water Withdrawal Application for the Susquehanna River Basin Watershed (Tioga, NY), the company was ready to begin hydraulic fracking. The July 2010 application states, “The water will be used during the drilling and hydro-fracturing process of the wells.”

Interestingly enough, prior to 2012 Bregal Energy was known as Good Energies – Van Doosselarer served on the Management and Investment Committee of Good Energies as well. According to a May 2012 story by Venture Wire about the name change, John Breckenridge of then Good Energies said oil and gas exploration isn’t just as good, it’s better than clean-technology start-up investing. He went on to say, “The renewables sector…has tremendous uncertainty in it.”

While Wisconsin’s Left is busy trying to attack fracking in any possible way, Mary Burke is busy collecting the money of those profiting from the technology.

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