What is it Like to Attend a Heartland Climate Conference?

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

This is my second visit to the United States, and my first visit to a Heartland Climate Conference.

The overwhelming feeling on the first day of the two day conference is that you are among friends – even if some people hold a different point of view.

Not everyone here agrees that climate is a non-issue. One of Heartland’s key note speakers today was Robert Mendelsohn, Ph.D.

Dr. Mendelsohn is concerned that if we don’t start taking at least minimal action to contain CO2 emissions, we face a much steeper bill a few decades from now.

I think it is fair to say most people disagreed with Dr. Mendelsohn’s position. But the thank you for Dr. Mendelsohn’s courage in presenting a contrary point of view to an audience who largely disagreed with his position received a heartfelt standing ovation.

This is what liberty feels like.

The Heartland Conference is a forum where people are free to disagree. There is no consensus police demanding rigorous adherence to a particular position. Heartland is a place where people can express their views in a forum which accepts that people have the right to form their own opinion, and defend that opinion on its merits, without name calling or disrespect.

I could tell you some of the interesting facts I learned, or the time I brought the house down with my question about “naked climate models” (not what you think), but if you want to know what really happened, watch the videos – well worth your time.

Better still if you are in Washington D.C, and can attend in person.

Shall I attend another Heartland Conference? Definitely. Am I looking forward to tomorrow’s session? Absolutely.

The freedom to express yourself without hostility, making friends, meeting climate heroes in person, debating theories on merit rather than whether they conform to political convenience – its like finding something you thought was just a dream.

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John Hardy
March 23, 2017 11:28 pm

This is heartening to read. Constructive discussion with those you disagree with is so much better than the character assassination and mud slinging that characterises so much of what passes for debate in this field

Reply to  John Hardy
March 24, 2017 4:34 am

I agree. It’s difficult with those that are so fearful of CO2 and so convinced we’re heretics, they cannot have a constructive conversation. Emotions and fear do strange things to people. And “Heartland” seems a good choice for the organization. Reasonable people have heart. I love these conferences. So grateful for the live and archived material. There’s a world of education there. It would be nice if schools and colleges would make use of the material.

Reply to  John Hardy
March 25, 2017 12:38 pm

“Constructive discussion with those you disagree with is so much better than the character assassination and mud slinging that characterises so much of what passes for debate in this field”

I couldn’t agree more. It’s a pity some here don’t keep that in mind when people state opinions in a polite neutral manner. Take a look at some of the nasty personal jibes written when Griff and Nick Stokes state their position in a polite and neutral way.

Reply to  Simon
March 25, 2017 2:27 pm

Passive-aggressive jabs and assumptive language of unearned authority are not “polite and neutral”. Also, never modifying a position when clearly rebutted, only slinking away and coming back to repeat it later, is dishonest debating. You three deserve every jibe you get.

Also, if you are taking a position in a debate, you are not and cannot be neutral. Leftivists have that peculiar doublethink where they forcefully express strong opinions yet loftily claim to be objective and neutral at the same time.

You’re trying to be a player in the game and the referee at the same time. We see right through it.

Reply to  Simon
March 25, 2017 3:38 pm

thank you so much for making my point. And for the record, I meant neutral as in the language not the content of the ideas. Nick Stokes is very rarely rebutted. But actually I do remember a time he admitted he was in error. Not a common thing on either side of this debate.

Reply to  Simon
March 25, 2017 5:54 pm

Thank you so much for making mine.

March 23, 2017 11:42 pm

Of course he’s right. You don’t ignore the risk because it is uncertain, you take action to manage it commensurate with what you judge to be its likelihood. But part of the risk you need to manage is that you spend up large dealing with the worst case, and it doesn’t happen.

Carbon BIgfoot
Reply to  HAS
March 24, 2017 1:39 pm

Mendelsohn is an economist and I tried not to Ralph, when he asserted that we don’t know the degree of climate sensitivity (garnered from his liberal losers at Yale). One only needs to listen to the Viscount Chris Monckton’s Friday morning keynote eviscerating all that climate sensitivity nonsense.

Reply to  Carbon BIgfoot
March 24, 2017 5:03 pm

Some of Mendelsohn’s ideas were run by us (WUWT) before in “Global Economic Damages from Tropical Cyclones – Sins of Omission”. An article by “Indur M. Goklany” back in 2012.

Where Mendelsohn fails rationality is his acceptance of the disasters predicted by the maximum CO2 emission scenarios; e.g. more frequent and more dangerous storms.

Economists love to take such irrational concepts to town in fantasy spreadsheets. Meaning it really doesn’t matter what his concepts of climate sensitivity are when his calculations accept false prophecies.

But, I am glad to hear he got to give a keynote address. Greater airing of illogical conclusions are best where discussed in open discussions; instead of true believer forums who accept disaster claims without question.

March 24, 2017 12:05 am

No, you don’t ignore the risks, even if they are uncertain. You use the precautionary principle. Most alarmists argue that the risks of global warming are huge (even Catastrophic), and the costs are minimal. However, I think that most of us would argue that the risks of global warming are low, and possibly even negative (ie, the risks are outweighed by the benefits). On the other hand, the more we see of the costs of taking action, the greater the costs of these actions appear.

So, using the precautionary principle, one should “make haste slowly”, check, check and check again on the data. Is it real or are there problems with the data? Check, check and check again the suggested remedies. Are they plausible? What is the likelihood of their success (how can success be defined and can it be measured? Do the remedies have any side effects? Are the side effects likely to make the situation better or worse (one can only think that most side effects make any situation worse – remember thalidomide – the only one I can think of that improved things was Viagra!).

Let caution be our watchword!

Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 12:18 am

Actually the precautionary principle is part of the problem rather than the solution. The trouble is it is more usually used to argue for caution over the adverse consequences, rather than caution over wasting money avoiding them.

There is no substitute for assessing the uncertainty and managing the risks taking account of the various costs and benefits of each potential outcome.

Alfred (Melbourne)
Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 12:41 am

The Precautionary Principle is that you should not meddle unless you are absolutely sure of what you are doing. If not absolutely sure that what you plan to do will lead to a positive result, you should leave well alone.

“… the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking that action.”


Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 1:25 am

I always think the precautionary principle is great. When I see you drowning I wont interfere, in case I make it worse. After all what is certain in this life?

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 1:33 am

Is the world drowning, leo?

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 3:47 am

Leo, You want to hold the drowning man’s head underwater. That is the difference.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 4:26 am

Alfred (Melbourne):

You give a clear statement of the Precautionary Principle (P) but you ignore that climate alarmists misuse it.

As you say

The Precautionary Principle is that you should not meddle unless you are absolutely sure of what you are doing. If not absolutely sure that what you plan to do will lead to a positive result, you should leave well alone.

“… the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking that action.”


Climate alarmists misuse the Precautionary Principle saying we should stop greenhouse gas emissions in case the AGW hypothesis is right. But that turns the Principle on its head.

Stopping the emissions would reduce fossil fuel usage with resulting economic damage. This would be worse than the ‘oil crisis’ of the 1970s because the reduction would be greater, would be permanent, and energy use has increased since then. The economic disruption would be world-wide. Major effects would be in the developed world because it has the largest economies. Worst effects would be on the world’s poorest peoples: people near starvation are starved by it.

The precautionary principle says we should not accept the risks of certain economic disruption in attempt to control the world’s climate on the basis of assumptions that have no supporting evidence and merely because they’ve been described using computer games.


Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 5:04 am

When I see you drowning I wont interfere, in case I make it worse.

Now folks, me thinks Leo Smith was just offering his honest opinion of himself ….. and in a kinda devious way was telling us that ……. he was incapable of swimming and would surely drown himself iffen he tried to help a drowning person.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 7:27 am

An excellent example of the proper use of the Precautionary Principle is in the charting of the orbits of asteroids and comets. These pose a threat of millions of times worse a scenario than emissions of CO2. There is no question about benefits to consider from such an event.

But we didnt really do this as a civil defence project. It is simply science and it came to be useful for such a consideration after real data began to accumulate. AND WE ARE CERTAIN THAT SUCH AN EVENT WILL HAPPEN left unchallenged (whether we could prevent it is another question). Should we go to the expense of towing all the possiblly dangerous asteroids away somewhere or worse move them into different orbits and possibly increase the risk. No, that would be stupid and impossibly costly.

Need I add that we should just do the science of climate in an honest way without a conclusion as a starting point. Need I add further that protection against known climate hazards and mitigation of developments is the only rational and lowest cost approach. I also recommend reading Richard Courtney’s nearby comment.

H. D. Hoese
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 7:57 am

NOAA Ocean definition.
“…human actions would be considered harmful unless proven otherwise.” (Restrepo et al., 1999). Restrepo, V. R., P. M. Mace and F. M Serchuk. 1999. The precautionary approach: a new paradigm or business as usual? pp. 61-70, IN, Our Living Oceans, Report on the status of U. S. living marine resources. NOAA Tech. Mem. NMFS-F/SPO-41.

Guilty until proven innocent.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 9:28 am

But we didnt really do this as a civil defence project. It is simply science and it came to be useful for such a consideration after real data began to accumulate. AND WE ARE CERTAIN THAT SUCH AN EVENT WILL HAPPEN left unchallenged (whether we could prevent it is another question). I saw a movie like this once. I’m sure the answer involved shooting all of our oil drillers into space to solve both asteroids and climate change in one fell swoop.

Hollywood has all of the answers.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 9:35 am

From that standpoint, an argument can be made that increasing CO2 in the atmosphere is the change and that we shouldn’t allow such changes until we have good evidence that no harm will come from it.

In my opinion, such evidence exists, in spades.

Roy Spencer
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 10:11 am

simply put, the Precautionary Principle works both ways, but alarmists only want it to apply one way.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 12:04 pm

“… the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking that action.”

Hmm, I’m inclined to see this particular real world matter (CAGW) in terms of forcing other people to take action . . as in; tossing other people into the water just in case they can help save you if you happen to fall in later ; )

Phil R
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 12:12 pm


+many. I like your interpretation.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 12:50 pm

If you go back in time it emerged as a legal concept in environmental management in the 1970/80s (see Wikipedia). It got its big push with Rio, but it worth looking at what Principle 15 actually says: “where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation.”

The debate over its application in climate change turns on whether there are “threats of serious or irreversible damage” and whether the proposed responses are “cost-effective”.

Leonard Lane
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 3:39 pm

Alfred, I disagree. Those screaming and wailing for taxpayer money and demanding that no one can disagree with them or has the right to speak, work, and in cases the warmunists have said denialists should be in jail or destroyed.
The burden of proof should fall ON THOSE SAYING IT IS HARMFUL! They are the ones wanting to live off the work of others based on unproven (and sometimes proven false, e.g. people are still seeing snow, even in the Sahara Desert. New York is not under many meters of water, and the polar bears are doing just fine).

James Schrumpf
Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 4:24 pm

The Precautionary Principle is just a watered-down version of Pascal’s Wager. Pascal argued that a rational person should live as though God exists and seek to believe in God. If God does actually exist, such a person will have only a finite loss (some pleasures, luxury, etc.), whereas they stand to receive infinite gains (as represented by eternity in Heaven) and avoid infinite losses (eternity in Hell).

An AGWPP-er will argue for the latter, but not for the former. Why the selectivity?

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 24, 2017 5:09 pm

“Samuel C Cogar March 24, 2017 at 5:04 am

“Leo Smith March 24, 2017 at 1:25 am
When I see you drowning I wont interfere, in case I make it worse.”

Now folks, me thinks Leo Smith was just offering his honest opinion of himself ….. and in a kinda devious way was telling us that ……. he was incapable of swimming and would surely drown himself iffen he tried to help a drowning person.”

Lack of swimming capability does not prevent anyone from:
• calling for help,
• throwing the victim a line,
• throwing the victim a float or preserver,
• working with others to form a human chain,
etc etc, with whatever the situation calls for.

Instead Leo Smith identifies himself as the worst possible neighbor and a troll.

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 25, 2017 4:16 am

Hello Richard Courtney and nice to hear from you.

I always appreciate your clearly-stated posts, which reflect your fine intellect. I wanted to give you an update on some of my recent activities, as related to the subject of the Precautionary Principle:

This article was recently published in the Calgary Herald – this action is the most severe reprimand against any company in the history of Alberta.

As a private citizen, I learned of and reported this dangerous critical sour gas situation in southeast Calgary to the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) in May 2016, and the project was shut down about two months later. My last involvement with the Mazeppa project was about 1992, when I was General Manager of Engineering for Canadian Occidental Petroleum, which then owned and operated it.

Based on my informant’s information and my investigation, I knew that the China-based principals at Lexin Resources were operating far outside our industry standards. The magnitude of this story as it unfolds is not surprising to me.

What does surprise me is that, except for The High River Times, the Calgary-area media missed the main story. Most of the Lexin articles in the press have been about the 1600 extra wells dumped into the Orphan Well Fund. There are about 80,000 Inactive wells that should be abandoned in the next decades in Alberta.

The real story is we came close, and I am not sure how close, to a sour gas discharge that could have killed tens of thousands of Calgarians. Lexin reportedly performed cutout repairs on their sour gas pipelines in late 2015, and eleven repairs were required including one small perforation in the pipe where sour gas was escaping to the atmosphere. For the last ~six months of operation, Lexin reportedly ceased their monthly injection of anti-corrosion chemicals into these critical sour gas pipelines. This was just begging for serious trouble. A full-scale sour gas discharge with an east wind could have made Bhopal, the worst industrial disaster of all time with about 3000 deaths, look small in comparison.

Best personal regards Richard.

Your friend, Allan

Reply to  Alfred (Melbourne)
March 29, 2017 8:53 am

Allan MacRae:

Thankyou for your kind words, your greeting, and your information.

Please forgive my tardy reply. I was not able to reply until now.


Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 4:05 am

There are lots of side-effects that can be positive. The formation of CO2 is good for plants, for example. Some heart treatments also help with erectile disfunction (like Viagra!) The key is to look at both positive and negative side-effects. Thalidomide can also have positive side-effects. It has 2 enantiomers (left and right handed mirror images). One is a sedative and has some anti-nausea effects as well. Seemed like a great drug for pregnant women. Help them sleep and help with morning sickness. But enantiomers have identical physical properties and are hard to separate. A few decades ago, more than half of all drugs sold were racemic mixtures (50:50 mixture of both). We now have better ways to avoid making as much of the “bad” enantiomer and also better ways of purifying but they are expensive. In the 1950s and 60s, not so much and we did not realize the opposite enantiomer was typically causing the side-effect. In fact, even in the early 1980s when I was finishing my B.S. in Chemistry, my 50 year old professor(s) told me that the opposite enantiomer was completely harmless and it was silly to pay more than 2X as much for pure Vitamin E, rather than the d,l racemic mixture. (I have not read whether the other enantiomer of Vit. E has ever been shown to have any harmful effects. It may be inert, which was the view in the past for all enantiomers, or it could simply interfere with the other enantiomer, making it less effective) With thalidomide, though, the “bad” enantiomer is now used in treating leprosy and myeloma(s).

Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 4:15 am

The problem with the precautionary principle is that it has mutated, over the years, into something quite different from the original.

When I first became aware of the principle 30+ years ago, it was often put as “look before you leap.” One important characteristic of this original form of the principle was that the burden of proof is always on those who want to make change. But during the intervening time, green and big-government activists have slowly corrupted the idea. They have changed it from “look before you leap” to “if in doubt, government should act.” As the UK’s “Inter-departmental Liaison Group for Risk Assessment” put it back in 2002: “The purpose of the precautionary principle is to create an impetus to take a decision notwithstanding scientific uncertainty about the nature and extent of the risk.” An activist’s wet dream, in my opinion.

Further, on an issue like global warming, where the question is whether people should continue to act in a particular way, as opposed to forcing them to make a change, the change to the principle results in inverting the burden of proof, and lays on the defenders of the status quo the impossible task of proving a negative.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Neil Lock
March 24, 2017 6:25 am

I confess that I was familiar with the Precautionary Principle only in it’s current mutated form. I did not realize the original was, as Willis points out below, more akin to the admonition, “First, do no harm.”

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Neil Lock
March 24, 2017 6:26 am

Sorry, William! Too early, no caffeine…

James Schrumpf
Reply to  Neil Lock
March 24, 2017 4:26 pm

The first recorded PP was Pascal’s Wager, most likely.

Reply to  Neil Lock
March 25, 2017 8:28 am

Carpenters have their own version, as well. “Measure twice, cut once.”

Leftivists are wont to cut thrice, measure never.

David Dirkse
Reply to  Neil Lock
March 25, 2017 8:37 am

And conservatives drop the saw because they can’t cut it.

Robert Austin
Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 9:10 am

The simple answer to the “precautionary principle” fallacy. You do not insure when the premiums cost vastly more than any conceivable damages from inaction.

george e. smith
Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
March 24, 2017 12:14 pm

Cavemen used the precautionary principle.

They slept outside on a bed of banana leaves in the rain, rather than sleep inside one of the five caves there that were nice and dry.

That way it didn’t matter which of those caves was the one the bear was in.

So you send five ships to sea with your cargo split among them. So what is your plan B if all five ships arrive on time ??


Reply to  george e. smith
March 24, 2017 4:59 pm

Celebration that no losses happened, where losses were foreseeable.

March 24, 2017 12:07 am

Re the costs of taking action, all should be aware of South Australia. “What did South Australians use before candles? Electricity!”

Coeur de Lion
March 24, 2017 12:16 am

Watch the price of electricity.

James Bull
March 24, 2017 12:18 am

I’m pleased your enjoying the conference, have a great second day.

James Bull

March 24, 2017 1:32 am

‘There is no consensus police demanding rigorous adherence to a particular position.’

GOOD! Because I Do believe there is a correlation between low solar activity and increased volcanic activity 😉

Reply to  ClimateOtter
March 24, 2017 3:44 am

Which comes first? 🙂

george e. smith
Reply to  ClimateOtter
March 24, 2017 12:15 pm

Can volcanoes on a planet actually affect the sun ??


March 24, 2017 3:19 am

It will not work in Australia as it would end up with a fight

March 24, 2017 3:43 am

First, do no harm

Anthony Ratliffe
Reply to  William E Heritage
March 24, 2017 3:54 am

My one regret is that it does not seem possible to look at the proceedings other than live (more or less). I would like to see yesterday’s Room A lunchtime keynote presentations. Are things going to be archived, eventually?.

Mumbles McGuirck
Reply to  Anthony Ratliffe
March 24, 2017 6:30 am

They usually post the talks a day or two later. They do minimal editing before posting them, so look at the Heartland site in a couple of days.

Julian Flood
March 24, 2017 3:51 am

Leo, I spoke up at the Suffolk County Council Cabinet meeting re Sizewell C a couple of weeks ago.There was the usual guff about the coming apocalypse. I pointed out that the strike price (nearly a hundred quid per megawatt hour now and rising with inflation) would be ruinous, and shale gas would be a third of that. Not many listening.

My point about SMRs hit home and afterwards I was approached for a quote by a reporter from some nuclear industry magazine. Zero carbon, RR made, bring them in on barges, about ten years quicker than the EPR, what’s not to like? They might actually work as well, a real bonus when you’re trying to keep the lights on.

Isn’t it odd that advocates for saving the planet always go for the most expensive ad least efficient option.

Anyway, keep up the fight. I see that someone above has misunderstood your point.



Reply to  Julian Flood
March 24, 2017 5:42 am

Excellent – I think anybody political in profession has their head buried in the sand. My MP certainly does. I do hope the industry sources start to speak up. We need engineers to say how crazy our policies are and to be involved in shaping policy for the future.

March 24, 2017 4:41 am

This is what it was like 30-40 years ago and we took it for granted that people had different opinions but we enjoyed debating with them to find out why they held their views which were so different to our own. Why has it changed to radically? Where did our freedom go? What drug are our elite and politicians on that makes them so intolerant and critical of anyone with a different view?

Reply to  Vanessa
March 24, 2017 9:07 am

It is down to the polarization of US political life…

Certain ideas in the US are now seen as belonging exclusively to one party or the other.

Such is the polarization that any idea now identified as being ‘of the other party’ will always be seen as totally and automatically wrong, no matter what the evidence.

Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 9:33 am

And in Griff’s case, ideas that are identified as being “of my party”, will be declared true, no matter what the evidence.

J Mac
Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 12:59 pm

Which party is the Emancipation Proclamation identified with?
Which party is the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (and 1967) identified with?
Are these ‘ideas become laws’ seen as automatically wrong today, because the Republican party members insisted on racial equality over the strict party line opposition of the Socialist Democrats?

James Schrumpf
Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 4:41 pm

J Mac
March 24, 2017 at 12:59 pm

Which party is the Emancipation Proclamation identified with?
Which party is the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (and 1967) identified with?
Are these ‘ideas become laws’ seen as automatically wrong today, because the Republican party members insisted on racial equality over the strict party line opposition of the Socialist Democrats?

The Civil Rights Act of 1964, passed by the Republican Party in Congress over the wishes of the Democrat Part, and Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society set of domestic programs passed by the most liberal, Democrat-dominated Congress since 1938, and that handed out billions of federal dollars to a vast panoply of social programs, best illustrated the core differences of Republicans and Democrats in the US. The Republican-passed Civil Rights Act gave rights and freedoms to oppressed and segregated African-American citizens, giving them the opportunity to better their situations. The Great Society programs handed out “stuff” to minorities — welfare money and subsidized housing — and as is inevitable, got more of what they paid for: broken families with absent fathers.

The old saying goes, “If you give a man a fish, he eats for a day. If you teach a man to fish, he will eat for the rest of his life.” However, the usual addendum to that is “But why bother with getting up early and cutting up nasty bait and putting it on a hook, and sitting in a boat all day when, you can just stop by and pick up your free daily fish?”

Reply to  Vanessa
March 24, 2017 12:16 pm

“…. Why has it changed to radically?…” It has taken this long for the Liberals/Marxist/Socialists/”ists” to gain control of the media. It’s a divide and conquer strategy.

Leonard Lane
Reply to  markl
March 24, 2017 3:49 pm

markl. They started taking over the schools in the 1930s and have now moved to capture the colleges and universities. For evidence search for the Venona Files.
It will take a long time to drain all these swamps.

March 24, 2017 5:08 am

Monckton’s presenting the Friday morning keynote at 8 am.

Tom in Florida
March 24, 2017 5:26 am

The Precautionary Principle must have some basis in facts and evidence. Otherwise it is just fear.
It is clear there is an epidemic of climate mutatiophobia going around.

old construction worker
March 24, 2017 5:38 am

I’ve said before: As U.S. Tax payer I don’t mind tax money going to study “Climate Change” but I’m not a mushroom. Don’t feed me BS.

Reply to  old construction worker
March 25, 2017 8:25 pm

I agree. As taxpayers, we need to support such. But when we have the EPA here in the US declaring that CO2 is a pollutant, this is pure BS and like you, don’t feed me BS.

March 24, 2017 9:09 am

right… but all the attendees wear black cloaks, have pencil moustaches and frequently come out with exhortations like ‘MWAH-HAHAHAHA’ and the like… don’t they?

(don’t shatter my illusions…)

Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 9:19 am


Robert Austin
Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 9:39 am

Mere projection, Griff. The Ernest Stavro Bloefeld / Snidely Whiplash style villain nicely fits into the CAGW side of the issue with your Maurice Strong type using the “Specter” of catastrophe to campaign for world government to save us from ourselves.

Reply to  Griff
March 24, 2017 12:09 pm

At a Heartland ICCC in Chicago, the goodies bag they give us included a carton of cigarettes and an Exxon/Mobil gift card along with a mini-hockey stick from CFact.

(Yeah, someone made off with the first two items before I got my bag.)

Reply to  Griff
March 25, 2017 8:36 am

Hey, irony! Good.

March 24, 2017 11:18 am

I would rather see the scientific community move on from endless arguments over the obviously flawed current state of climate modeling, towards a discussion along the following lines:

The climate is warming, just as it has been for 20,000 years. And it is likely to continue warming until some il-defined point at time when it reaches a peak and then stabilizes or cools off again. Given that expectation, what can we as humans do to continue, as we have for hundreds of thousands of years, to adapt to forever climate change?

That is the only question that we can actually “do something” about that is practical. And we need to stay focused on that. Because eventually, the argument over hydrocarbon use is going to end whenever the supply runs out, as it must. It is only a matter of “when”, and that “when” will not be experienced within geologic time but within the next several generations of humans.

Frankly, it is much more urgent that we figure out how to power our society on something other than hydrocarbons – not to “save the planet” but to save our civilization. Without readily available and inexpensive energy, our society will collapse very quickly.

Reply to  Duane
March 25, 2017 9:53 am

We’ll continue use of hydrocarbon fuels until it’s no longer cost-effective to do so. No sooner. We’ll aggressively pursue alternative energy sources when the market begins to demand them. No sooner. If necessity is the mother of innovation, the pursuit of profit is its boss.

March 24, 2017 1:24 pm

The hydrocarbon supply will never run out. It will just become increasingly expensive and as it does we will begin using substitutes.

Reply to  flogage
March 24, 2017 8:32 pm

It will never run out – Literally, we are just swimming in methane, and if we can’t mine it, it’s dead set simple to make. Not to mention that a mere 588 million km away there is a planetoid (moon) with oceans made from the stuff.

Reply to  flogage
March 27, 2017 9:17 am


March 24, 2017 1:57 pm

There’s a dumb-blond-climate-model joke in here somewhere, but I just can’t figure it out yet.

Reply to  Robert Kernodle
March 24, 2017 4:43 pm

There should be a litmus test for weather people before they can go on the air.
(That is a real dumb blond who made that claim).

March 24, 2017 4:41 pm

If you are still in the states Eric and need a cheap place to crash to offset costs, I’m about an hour south of DC.

Offer’s open for others too, depending upon civility and purpose.
Sorry, I can not offer pick up or delivery; wish I could.

March 24, 2017 4:44 pm

How about keep studying the weather, leave the data alone, be completely open on your measurements and methods and admit that climate science has a long way to go on the only road to follow which is truth.

And to the model makers and prophets, improve.

March 24, 2017 5:27 pm

Wow, the media (including this one) hasn’t had much to say about this conference. Is there a standout presentation I can distribute similar to Dr. Patrick Moore’s from last year that I can use on social media…
(I was thinking that this conference wasn’t until April)…there is so much stuff going on now, I lost track of dates…

Reply to  J. Philip Peterson
March 24, 2017 6:03 pm

@Eric Worrall
What do you think was the most effective presentation from the WUWT point of view? Or, which presentations do you think we should watch?
Thanks so much for your report.

March 24, 2017 6:28 pm

I just got home from ICCC-12 and it was excellent, Eric is correct. Everyone there was friendly and there were lots of intense conversations going on during the breaks; real science being discussed, dissected, and debated, just like back in the 80s, very nostalgic. Reminded me of the last GSA meeting I attended in Orlando (Disney World), FL, in 1986.

There were many stand-out talks on many different topics. Today I even listened to policy talks and was not bored. I hate to say it, but Mendelsohn’s talk was quite good but the people at my table wanted to throw pieces of bread at him. He was so sincere, I thought he was going to start crying, he got quite emotional about how we need to do something NOW. It would have gone over great at a COP meeting. But, all of us were polite, no bread was thrown, and we applauded him for his obvious sincerity.

Listen/watch the videos, I’m sure something will jump out at you, J. Philip Peterson, there were very few talks that were not top notch. A very high standard was observed.


March 24, 2017 10:23 pm

It appears the videos are online now at climateconference.heartland.org. I got back from the conference earlier this evening and have to agree with Eric and pameladragon, it was outstanding.

I enjoyed being able to not only meet many of the speakers, but to chat with them and ask them questions in between sessions. I was able to talk with Scott Armstrong, Willie Soon, Patrick Michaels, Craig Idso, Jay Lehr, Don Easterbrook, Myron Ebell, and the inimitable Christopher Monckton. Sat with Steve Goreham for a couple of the panels. Had lunch with Susan Crockford. I hate to sound like a groupie but these are rock stars to me (although I prefer classical music). I’m just John Q. Public.

And the best part was getting to meet many other people from around the country who aren’t famous but who are following the discussion, doing their own research, and coming to their own conclusions. I missed seeing Anthony, but hey, I got to meet you, Eric, after all this time of reading your guest posts.

One of the funniest moments for me occurred yesterday when between the final afternoon panel and the dinner, while standing in the hallway I suddenly heard a familiar tune wafting in from the direction of the lobby. Having asked Lord Monckton when I met him Thursday morning if he was going to play the piano for us, I knew exactly what it was.

The music stopped just as I arrived to find a Washington Metro Police officer trying to explain to Lord Monckton that he couldn’t play the piano because, something to the effect of, it will disturb the people in the lobby. Pay no attention to the fact that, although it’s an open atrium, the “lobby” was 2 floors above. I’ll let Mr. Monckton tell the rest of the story if he cares to, but the look on the officers face when Christopher pulled out a pen and pad of paper to take notes was………priceless.

Reply to  Frizzy
March 25, 2017 4:50 pm

Washington Metro Police officers routinely ignore violinists, saxophonists, horn players, clarinetists, flutists and even a cap·pel·la.groups.

Yet they stop Monckton from playing a piano!?

What is the piano there for? Visual impacts? Occupy floor space so people can’t?

Reminds me of the DC Police officers and Park Guards who physically grabbed an Olympic paddler who was practicing in Potomac flood waters.
When they hauled him into court to face a large list of broken laws, including endangering police officers; who jumped into the flood water to grab the man; thus endangering said police officers.

The judge read the alleged broken law out loud, including the Danger Announcement advising only ‘experts’ to risk the flood waters.
The judge then read the arrested man’s credentials and the types of water he encountered in competition. The judge then asked the arresting police officer, who was also endangered himself leap in the water officer, just who would be considered an ‘expert’?

The officer’s attempts to claim expert authority or authority for whomever made the Flood danger announcement were quickly rebuked by the judge.

Be careful though, those Metro Officers will happily write you a summons for eating or drinking on the Metro (subway that is sometimes under ground).

michael hart
March 25, 2017 12:06 am

Dr. Mendelsohn is concerned that if we don’t start taking at least minimal action to contain CO2 emissions, we face a much steeper bill a few decades from now.

The problem is that the “minimal” actions that might have any significant effect would be economically and socially catastrophic. The actions currently being pushed through are highly damaging yet will have vanishingly small effects on the environment. Even warmists like Bjørn Lomborg get sent to the dog house for pointing this out.

March 25, 2017 5:54 am

It was nice to meet Eric, and I agree with his assessment. Mockton was magnificent, giving perhaps the most scientific presentation. He is also an accomplished pianist.

March 25, 2017 7:35 am

Thanks, Eric, for writing about the conference. it was great to meet you and spend a little time getting to know each other. Hope to see you at our next one!

MEANWHILE: The whole two-day program is now broken up by session and room in chronological order at the conference website (http://bit.ly/ICCC-12). This is a “quick” archive. In the coming week to 10 days, each individual presentation and their PowerPoint sideshows will be posted by speaker on Heartland’s archive page for all 12 International Conferences on Climate Change here: http://climateconferences.heartland.org/

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