Full house at #ICCC9


UPDATE: opening remarks posted below. Earlier today I posted a photo showing this auditorium before the conference. It was empty then. Now it is a full house with over 600 attending. Live video feed will start soon:


Be sure to watch.

Opening Remarks by

Heartland Institute President Joseph Bast at the Ninth International

Conference on Climate Change

LAS VEGAS — Below are the prepared remarks by Heartland Institute President Joseph Bast to open the Ninth International Conference on Climate Change on the evening of July 7, 2014 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.

The conference runs from 7:45 p.m. PDT tonight until 4 p.m. PDT Wednesday, July 9. You can view the entire conference via the live-stream at the conference website. Click here for a full schedule, click here for a list of speakers, and click here for list of publicly announced award recipients.

For more information about the conference, or to schedule an interview with one of the speakers, contact Director of Communications Jim Lakely at jlakely@heartland.org or via cell phone at 312/731-9364.



Good evening! Welcome to the Ninth International Conference on Climate Change.

Thank you for the introduction, James. James Taylor, a Heartland senior fellow and editor of Environment & Climate News, once again recruited most of the speakers for this conference, so a big round of applause, please, for him.

We will hear from some 64 speakers from 12 countries, 13 if you count the Moon as a country and figure Walter Cunningham can claim residence there, 14 if you think Washington DC is its own planet.

Scientists, economists, and policy experts from around the world are skeptical about the claims of global warming alarmists, not just those here in the U.S.


And it isn’t just The Heartland Institute in the U.S. that thinks the threat of man-made global warming is being over-blown. This year’s ICCC is cosponsored by 32 organizations – their names have been scrolling on these screens while you were eating. Many of them agreed to pay $150 and some even more to help us offset the cost of hosting the conference and sponsoring awards to some outstanding individuals.

In particular, I would like to recognize and thank the Media Research Center, Cornwall Alliance, Science and Environmental Policy Project, Heritage Foundation, Competitive Enterprise Institute, CFACT, and the George C. Marshall Institute, for their help.

Please give all the cosponsors a big round of applause.


Speaking of funding and for the record, except for $150 from the Illinois Coal Association and another $150 from Liberty Coin Service, a great little coin shop in Lansing, Michigan, owned by my old friend Pat Heller, no corporate money was raised for this conference. And no, not a nickel from the “Koch brothers.”

About the conference

This conference will have panels featuring prominent scientists discussing the latest physical science such as the Apause@ and the failure of models to predict it, the IPCC=s fifth assessment report and NIPCC=s Climate Change Reconsidered II, polar ice caps, and much more.

Also on the program are economists and policy experts explaining the social BENEFITS as well as the social COSTS of fossil fuels, the futility of spending trillions of dollars attempting to stop uncertain and perhaps unknowable climate changes a century from now, and the need to repeal the bad energy policies and other policies that were adopted at the peak of the global warming scare and are now understood to be unnecessary, costly, and counterproductive.

You will also hear from bloggers, meteorologists, elected officials, and some of the most effective public speakers on earth about how to communicate the truth about climate change in a world in which most people are content to believe in climate change, rather than understand it.

This is a scholarly conference that many professional scientists are attending, and the speakers are prepared to handle their tough questions. But it is also entertaining and a little provocative, because unlike many alarmists, skeptics can take a joke.

Some speakers can’t help themselves but make fun of such leading proponents of global warming alarmism as Al Gore, Prince Charles, John Kerry, and even our new climate-scientist-in-chief, President Obama.

We have an Austrian rapper who going to entertain us tonight with a remarkable song he wrote about global warming following dinner tonight. It’s not a full-fledged Broadway play, but then again, we didn’t get $700,000 from the National Science Foundation to pay for it.

Missing from the program this year are any prominent global warming alarmists. We wish to debate those who disagree with us, but once again none of the alarmists we invited to speak showed up to defend their faith. So tomorrow’s headline may read “Global Warming Skeptics Refuse to Debate Their Opponents.” It’s not our fault. It’s hard to have a debate, over even a civil conversation, when the other side refuses to show up.

The Heartland Institute

This conference is a project of The Heartland Institute’s Center on Climate and Environmental Policy, which produces an ambitious program of research and educational projects in defense of free-market environmentalism. The world needs voices devoted to sound science and market-based, rather than government-based, solutions to environmental problems. The Heartland Institute helps find and amplify those voices. The nation’s air and water quality, the safety of its food, and the health and productivity of its forests all depend on bringing the best-available science and economic research to bear on protecting the environment.

We have brought together a team of leading scientists and economic experts to participate in the production of books — including four volumes in the Climate Change Rconsidered series, produced by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change — plus policy studies, videos, a monthly public policy newspaper, events like this one, and other educational activities.

If you aren’t already a donor and supporter of The Heartland Institute, I hope you’ll decide to become one over the next three days. More information and donor forms are on your table.

Theme for ICCC-9

As some of you know, we devoted a lot of effort to coming up with a theme for this year’s conference. This conference is scholarly but also a little entertaining and provocative. It offers contributions by scientists, economists, public policy experts, and professional communicators, and the audience includes all of the above plus elected officials, grassroots activists, and (it seems) about 1,000 retired engineers.

How to capture all that in a few words? I solicited ideas from a network of interested folks, and got an amazing number of suggestions, not all of them appropriate. Some of my favorites, though, in alphabetical order, were:

A lie repeated is still a lie

Beyond alarmism

Beyond the IPCC

Climate science vs. climate consensus

Climate change for dummies: A primer for Gore, Kerry, and Obama

Earth to Man: I barely notice you


Flogging a dead horse

And that was just some suggestions starting with the letters A through F!

We settled on “don’t just wonder about global warming, understand it!” I think that captures in just a few words the key difference between alarmists and skeptics in the global warming debate.

Alarmists see what they believe, while skeptics believe what they see. Alarmists think every change in the weather is evidence of a human impact on climate, and a human impact is necessarily bad. They believe only government can solve big problems, and man-made climate change would be the biggest problem ever discovered.

Skeptics believe what they see. They look at the data and see no warming for 17 years, no increase in storms, no increase in the rate of sea level rise, no new extinctions attributable to climate change, in short, no climate crisis. They ask how that could be, since humans obviously emit massive amounts of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases and affect climate in other ways, such as through agriculture, coastal development, and damming rivers.

They study the data – not the models, which just assume much of what is unknown – and come to understand climate They conclude – many of them, anyway — that climate is a chaotic system that makes reliable long-term forecasts impossible, that natural variability swamps whatever effect humans might have, and that trying to control the weather by controlling how much carbon dioxide we put into the atmosphere is folly, plain and simple.

That’s what I’ve come to understand to be the truth about climate change. One of the neat things about global warming skeptics is that they seldom agree on anything, so I dare not speak on behalf of anyone else. But I think most skeptics would say this is pretty close to it.

Climate Science Awards

Global warming has been called the most important public policy debate of our age. Those who believe in man-made global warming call for draconian reductions in the use of fossil fuels that would destroy millions of jobs and trillions of dollars of wealth, and impoverish millions of people. Rather than defend the science behind their cause, global warming alarmists typically claim “the debate is over” and demonize their critics.

Global warming “skeptics” question whether the scientific debate is truly settled and ask for real data to support the claims of the alarmists. For this, they have been viciously attacked in the press, by politicians (including President Barack Obama), and on countless blogs and Web sites.

Some of the world’s most distinguished scientists, such as S. Fred Singer, Frederick Seitz, Sherwood Idso, Richard Lindzen, and Freeman Dyson, are global warming skeptics. They have been accused of dishonesty, incompetence, and worse.

In Fiscal Year 2013, the U.S. federal government spent $22.5 billion on “global warming.” It spent $200 billion over the past 20 years. By one estimate, the world is spending $1 billion a DAY on projects that wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for global warming alarmism.

All this spending has created a global warming industry that marginalizes, demonizes, and sometimes outright attacks the thousands of scholars and other professionals willing to speak out against a popular delusion. Scientists, economists, journalists, politicians, civic and business leaders – have had their careers ended or ruined by daring to speak truth to power.

The voices that ordinarily would speak out against crimes against free speech – we used to call them liberals, or free-thinkers — are silent, either because of ignorance, ideological bias, or financial conflicts of interest.

Seven organizations have stepped forward to nominate award recipients and organize the award ceremonies to honor the brave men and women willing to speak out against global warming alarmism. Two of these awards will be presented tonight.

These awards deliver long-overdue recognition and encouragement to their recipients.

They also increase public awareness of the global warming realism movement and send a signal to the academy and other elite institutions saying if they won’t recognize our heroes, we will.


The Heartland Institute is a 30-year-old national nonprofit organization headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Its mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. For more information, visit our Web site or call 312/377-4000.


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tm willemse
July 7, 2014 7:20 pm

Wish I were there. Watching online.

kbray in california
July 7, 2014 7:36 pm

is anyone getting the feed yet ?

July 7, 2014 8:00 pm

Wish I could go. Looks great.
It would not be surprising for disruptive gate crashers to show up.

Alan Robertson
July 7, 2014 8:30 pm

Nice threads, Joe.

July 7, 2014 8:39 pm

Joe Bastardi needs better joke writers. Lots of energy, but kind of scatter shot.

July 7, 2014 8:52 pm

Love it!!

July 7, 2014 8:53 pm

Gary says: “Joe Bastardi needs better joke writers.”
Because that’s what science is about.

July 7, 2014 8:56 pm

200 billion dollars = 50 modern, 1250 MW Nuclear power plants.
Enough to bring USA to 50 to 70 % nuclear.
GOD HAVE MERCY ON OUR SOULS when we are called to account for our cowardice, ignorance, and EVIL in not doing this.

July 7, 2014 8:56 pm

PS: That is ELECTRIC, with is about 35% of our energy usage.

David Chappell
July 7, 2014 8:59 pm

Looks like a live physical feed in the photograph…

David Chappell
July 7, 2014 9:04 pm

Should “Earth to Man: I barely notice you” read “Earth to Mann…”

July 7, 2014 9:45 pm

Here’s what I suggest as the theme for the next ICCC:
<B<”Who’s in Denial Now?”
It would be accompanied by an image of a hockey stick with its shaft slanting upwards & to the right and with its blade flat and pointing to the right.
The stick would be transparently overlaid on a graph of the running mean of GASTA (Global Average Surface Temperature Anomaly), averaged from five sources. Flipping over the hockey stick turns the tables on our opponents in a clever and memorable way.
In order for it to be included in photos used in the MSM, it should be imprinted on the backdrop behind the speakers.
It could be printed on coffee mugs and T-shirts. Eventually, it should be used in a billboard campaign.

July 7, 2014 9:53 pm

I loved Joe Bastardi’s presentation. Nice job!

Alan Robertson
July 7, 2014 9:53 pm

I do hope that videos of all conference presentations will be available, later.

David L. Hagen
July 7, 2014 10:08 pm

See Austrian rapper Kilez More with some pragmatic challenging observations on climate alarmists.

July 7, 2014 10:24 pm

i loved it all. it never bothers me if the jokes get corny, or the technology doesn’t work perfectly, or if the people don’t always agree. in fact, i find all that human and endearing.
thank you heartland & all involved. can’t wait for tomorrow’s program.

John F. Hultquist
July 7, 2014 10:35 pm

Cheers to all at Las Vegas ICCC9.
The high in LV for today coming from KVGT is reported as 102. About this time of year in 1976 we were in Tucson and it was 115, or maybe that was in Phoenix in 1970. As a famous lady remarked: What difference does it make now. Also of interest is this Scott Sistek report of the temps in Seattle 144 years ago:

Joseph Bastardi
July 7, 2014 10:37 pm

For the record, jokes just pop in my head. I dont know exactly what I am going to say before, nor do I remember what I said after.. I just prepare and try to “chain wrestle” based on the overall preparation. I thought the idea that it was scatter shot was on target. I dont know if its cause it was late, but I did not think I flowed as well as I have before. I am asleep by the time I was on tonight. Naturally people are kind to me here, but I did not think this was my best job. Which means until I speak again, I gotta live with it

July 7, 2014 10:38 pm

PS: Here’s a theme for another conference:
97% WRONG! or 97% Certain & 97% WRONG!

July 7, 2014 11:04 pm

Enjoyed every moment. It’s the next best thing to actually being in Las Vegas. I loved Joe Bastardi!

July 7, 2014 11:17 pm

“Don’t just wonder about global warming, understand it!”
I hope, I don’t get this message right, because my english is not that good. But this looks to me the worst statement a sceptical conference could have chosen. I’m missing anger, revolt and esprit. It is so bad, that Al Gore could use it unchanged for a new programm….

July 8, 2014 12:07 am

There was nothing wrong with Joe Bastardi’s accent, he was very easy to understand.

July 8, 2014 4:14 am

Joseph Bastardi says: ” … Naturally people are kind to me here, but I did not think this was my best job. Which means until I speak again, I gotta live with it”
Many are kind to you because you are one of the best meteorologists ever. Besides that, you are honest. Besides that, I have never seen you react with a “thin skin”. You are tough but fair with others.
God bless you and yours.
~ Mark

July 8, 2014 5:19 am

Art last this looks more like a serious effort. Me thinks MSM will be taking a closer look.

July 8, 2014 5:41 am

Was it just me, or were the remarks by Dana Rohrabacher awkward and unnecessary? Him droning on and on about acid rain and his personal experiences killed the enthusiasm of the opening ceremonies.

David in Michigan
July 8, 2014 5:45 am

Please don’t beat me up for this observation from the photograph. It’s just an observation and I’ll concede that maybe it’s a meaningless observation. But maybe not too. AGW has become a political as well as a scientific issue. In THAT context it may be meaningful.
1. 90% men
2. average age 50s
3. overwhelmingly white

Bruce Cobb
July 8, 2014 5:46 am

Why do they even need a theme? Themes always seem gimmicky and pasted-on. The one they chose seems especially lame. If they feel they must have one, I’d keep it short and snappy – two or three words.

July 8, 2014 5:49 am

Joe, your presentation was very good. The only issues I caught grief from was the comment that arctic ice was at all time highs. The chat room on the video feed blew up when you said that. Did we hear you incorrectly? I am waiting for the videos to post to see if I “misheard” you.

Alan Robertson
July 8, 2014 6:12 am

Gregory says:
July 8, 2014 at 5:41 am
“Was it just me, …?”
It may have taken Rep. Rohrabacher a while to get wound up, but he was leading up to his correct assessment that we are in a fight for liberty against those who use every opportunity to tighten the collar around our necks. He was precisely on the mark. Without such men and women, the world would very soon become a much darker place, in every sense.
History is filled with heroes who gave (some of us in the world,) an opportunity to live relatively unfettered, with the freedom to build a life limited only by our own design. Ben Franklin, Patrick Henry and so many others- their words and works come to us across the gulf of time, but this conference is giving us the chance to glimpse the thinking of equally passionate and dedicated heroes in our own time.

more soylent green!
July 8, 2014 6:19 am

Those of you in town should pick up a copy of Tuesday’s Las Vegas Review Journal and read John L. Smith’s column covering the event. It’s full of the usual — Heartland is funded by Big Tobacco, Big Pharam, Big Oil, etc.. I especially like the strawman argument that the public believes the climate has warmed and the claims that the skeptics are the ones politicizing the issue of global warming.
I can’t find the column online this morning, so I don’t have a link to post.
BTW: Don’t let Smith’s column poison your attitude about the RJ. It’s a great paper. http://www.reviewjournal.com

Bruce Cobb
July 8, 2014 6:33 am

I will summarize the two sides of the climate “debate”: The skeptic/climate realist side is interested in facts, science, and truth, while the CAGW/Believer side is interested only in dogma, ideology, faux science, lies, and what to do about a mythical, anti-human, global “problem”. Not that they’d ever show up, but why bother even inviting them? They are a disgrace to both science and humanity.

July 8, 2014 6:39 am

When I left home home yesterday from New Hampshire, the dewpoint was 59F and I was expecting low 40s here. Unfortunately, while I was distracted with Arthur and getting ready to come here, the summer monsoon came and the dewpoint here is about 59F. So much for a dry heat. It’ll drop to 51F while the air temp goes up to 105F (about 40C). I think I’ll stay inside….

July 8, 2014 6:56 am

I also enjoyed Joe Bastardi’s presentation. Unfortunately, it’s the only one I’ve had the chance to watch.

John Of Cloverdale WA, Australia
July 8, 2014 8:06 am

David in Michigan says:
July 8, 2014 at 5:45 am
“3. overwhelmingly white”
David, maybe this is the reason:
“Black people are 12 percent of the U.S. population and 11 percent of all students beyond high school. In 2009, they received just 7 percent of all STEM bachelor’s degrees, 4 percent of master’s degrees, and 2 percent of PhDs, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.”

John Of Cloverdale WA, Australia
July 8, 2014 8:09 am

Is there a link to Bastardi’s presentation? I only see links to live streaming.

John F. Hultquist
July 8, 2014 8:36 am

Thanks for the updates and links.
Folks seem a bit picky this week. When you have given a talk, speech, presentation, or tell a few jokes in front of a large crowd and done it perfectly – take a bow!

July 8, 2014 2:19 pm

It says I can’t watch it on my computer?

Bazza McKenzie
July 8, 2014 5:12 pm

So, no government funding for ICCC9. That makes it suspect from the outset.

Gary England
July 9, 2014 8:32 pm

When and where will the next conference take place? Would loved to have been at this one..

July 9, 2014 11:26 pm

Joseph Bastardi says:
July 7, 2014 at 10:37 pm
You were great. I was there.
You are a messenger of the truth, and serve it up with a spoonful of sugar, that is humor and good nature. Your love of the truth shined thru. Perhaps standup comedian you are not; but that’s not your gig; you’re a scientist in an arena that has become poisoned by rent-seekers and worse. So the message needs to punch through. You do that; you did that; keep it up; never change. I am a fan of yours; because you are a scientist and a seeker of truth, not a professional entertainer.
But. I was quite entertained. Must have been the Las Vegas effect!

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