Dennis Avery, Fred Singer Honored with 2008 Heartland Liberty Prize

Published September 29, 2008

CHICAGO — Two outspoken skeptics about the hot-button topic of global warming will be honored Thursday in Chicago with an award presented by The Heartland Institute, a national 24-year-old nonprofit research organization based in Chicago.

Dennis Avery, director of the Center for Global Food Issues and a senior fellow at The Heartland Institute, and S. Fred Singer, president of the Science & Environmental Policy Project and a distinguished professor emeritus of environmental science at the University of Virginia, will receive Heartland Liberty Prizes at Heartland’s anniversary benefit dinner, taking place at the Hilton Chicago Hotel.

The Heartland Liberty Prize is given to individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to the preservation of liberty in the United States. Notable past winners include Nobel Prize-winning economist Gary Becker, nationally recognized columnist Walter Williams, television journalist John Stossel, and Cato Institute founder Ed Crane. Of the prize, Heartland Institute President Joseph Bast noted, “We don’t give this award lightly. It’s reserved for those who have made essential contributions to advancing the cause of individual freedom.”

Avery (an economist) and Singer (a physicist) are longtime friends and colleagues. Both have been on the forefront of the international debate over global warming, questioning whether human activity is responsible for the warming of the twentieth century, whether the consequences of that warming were good or bad, and whether anything should be done to prevent or accommodate future climate changes.

In 2006, Avery and Singer co-authored “Unstoppable Global Warming – Every 1,500 Years,” which spent several weeks on the New York Times best-seller list. More than 130,000 copies of a revised and expanded second edition of the book, released this year, are in circulation, and a Spanish edition is about to go to print.

“Friends of liberty and sound science draw inspiration from Avery’s and Singer’s determination, enthusiasm, and commitment to speaking unpopular truths,” said Bast. “Through their work, independently and together, they have advanced the cause of freedom with great insight, sound science, and effective communication.”

In addition to his work with The Heartland Institute, Avery is a senior fellow of the Hudson Institute in Washington, DC and author of “Global Food Progress” and “Saving the Planet with Pesticides and Plastic: The Environmental Triumph of High-Yield Farming.”

Singer, who holds a Ph.D. in physics from Princeton University, is internationally known for his work on energy and environmental issues. A pioneer in the development of rocket and satellite technology, he devised the basic instrument for measuring stratospheric ozone and was principal investigator on a satellite experiment retrieved by the space shuttle in 1990. He founded the Science & Environmental Policy Project in 1990 in Arlington, Virginia.

More complete biographies of the award winners and the event can be found on The Heartland Institute’s Web site at

For more information about the Heartland Liberty Prize and the anniversary benefit dinner, contact Dan Miller, publisher, or Tammy Nash, media specialist, at Heartland at (312) 377-4000 or [email protected] or [email protected].