The Guardian has an astonishing splash on Greenpeace. Based on documents leaked from the activists' HQ, it appears that the finance department has been in chaos for years.
The handling of Greenpeace International’s £58m budget has been in disarray for years, with its finance team beset by personnel problems and a lack of rigorous processes, leading to errors, substandard work and a souring of relationships between its Amsterdam HQ and offices around the world, documents and emails leaked to the Guardian show.
A board minute is quoted that suggests that the internal financial controls are just a bit on the weak side:
[the board] is particularly troubled by...the lack of strong, coherent processes and controls that prevent the possibility that contracts can be entered into without due authorisation.
It's pretty surprising then that the organisation's auditors, Ernst and Young, have given it a clean bill of health in past years.
Even more remarkably, it is revealed that some of Greenpeace's most senior figures have adopted what normal mortals might consider ultra-high carbon lifestyles:
The Guardian has also learned that one of the group’s most senior executives, Pascal Husting, Greenpeace International’s international programme director, works in Amsterdam but flies between the city’s offices and his home in Luxembourg several times a month.
Naidoo defended the arrangement, saying: “Pascal has a young family in Luxembourg. When he was offered the new role he couldn’t move his family to Amsterdam straight away. He’d be the first to say he hates the commute, hates having to fly, but right now he hasn’t got much of an option until he can move. He wishes there was an express train between his home and his office, but it would currently be a 12-hour round trip by train.”
Greens go by air it seems. A lot.
The fact that Luxembourg is a tax haven is also worth of note.
This article notes that Husting is a native of Luxembourg. Interestingly though, the same article notes that he was appointed at the start of 2012, so when Kumi Naidoo says "he has no choice" about his long-distance commute, I'm not sure we are hearing the whole truth. So perhaps there is something to the tax haven angle.