Origin Materials - Lobbying For a Future with Sustainable Materials

In the political environment of the United States, lobbying is an essential part for any business. For the chemical industry in particular, who may be seen in the general public eye as leading environmental offenders, lobbyists are crucial for the development of new products and ramped up production. The first disclosure of a limitation on CMF production in the United States was in a May 2021 prospectus filed with the SEC, prior to Origin Materials' reverse merger with the Artius Acquisition SPAC.

The same risk factor has appeared in subsequent filings, including the annual report for 2022


So, in addition to "filing notifications under TSCA and CEPA seeking to remove these restrictions," just what else has the company done? Before we get to specifics, let's have a look at how CEO John Bissell responded to the question when recently posted to him via Twitter:


Now, let's start to get to some specifics., which conveniently tracks lobbying spending for American companies, shows that Origin's spending on lobbying has increased 90.9% -- on a year over year basis, up to $210k in 2022 from $110k in 2021.


The average spending per chemical company in the US for 2022 was $515k, with the top three spenders on lobbying being:

  • American Chemistry Council - $19.76M
  • Dow, Inc. - $6.92M
  • LyondellBasell Industries - $3.42M

Speaking of the American Chemistry Council, recent Board of Director addition Craig Rogerson previously served on the board for the ACC. 

So what has the company been lobbying for thus far? If you have a look at Propublica, every issue thus far is listed. They include:

  • Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act (P.L/ 117-58)
  • Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act (P.L. - 117-58)
  • Issues related to IRC Section 48C tax credit Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act (P.L. 117-58)
  • issues relating to IRC Section 48C tax credit Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act (P.L. - 117-58)
  • Issues regarding the use of biomass in chemicals, plastics and fuel Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act (P.L. - 117-58)

All referring to Public Law 117-58 aka ‘Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act'. Personally I have to imagine that the restriction/limitations on the production of CMF falls under the "issues regarding the use of biomass in chemicals, plastics and fuel" umbrella.

Furthermore, lest we forget the following developments that are sure to sway regulators:

Who is behind Origin Materials' lobbying:



Corbin and Kaiser, Samson Advisors, and Capitol Advocacy are listed as lobbying firms Origin Materials is a client of in the State of California 2023-2024 lobbying directory. Note that PepsiCo, an Origin partner company, is a client of Capitol Advocacy. 



Finally, it's worth re-iterating (as I've already written on this previously) that Origin Materials has joined the Louisiana Chemical Association. Specifically, with regards to lobbying, it is significant. Perhaps the LCA's description from their website is the best explanation as to why this matters for Origin:

The Louisiana chemical industry is the cornerstone of the state’s economy and is an essential part of Louisiana’s future. The Louisiana Chemical Association (LCA) was formed in 1959 to promote a positive business climate for chemical manufacturing that ensures long-term economic growth for its 63 member companies that operate more than 100 sites throughout Louisiana. LCA, Louisiana Chemical Industry Alliance and related organizations work to protect and expand Louisiana’s petrochemical manufacturing base. It is critical for the industry to have a unified voice in state governmental activities because legislative and regulatory actions can affect capital investment and job retention and growth. LCA is governed by a Board of Directors that consists of 17 member company representatives, primarily plant managers and divisional vice presidents. LCA has an experienced staff with expertise in the chemical industry, environmental, health, safety, security, governmental affairs, communications and association management.

In summation, when Bissell says "we're quite comfortable with how that's all progressed," he's clearly not just blowing smoke. 

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