Heartland Institute Experts: Senate Democrats’ Climate Change All-Nighter Bizarre and Pointless

Senate Democrats have announced they will be launching an overnight “talkathon” tonight. The move is spearheaded by Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii, avowedly to raise awareness about the new Senate Climate Action Task Force. The action is not a filibuster, as no legislation is under discussion. It is an unusual move, given that the Democrats control the Senate.

The following statements from climate science and policy experts at The Heartland Institute – a free-market think tank – may be used for attribution. For more comments, refer to the contact information below. To book a Heartland guest on your program, please contact Director of Communications Jim Lakely at [email protected] and 312/377-4000 or (cell) 312/731-9364.

“The Senate ‘talkathon’ smacks of desperation to revive a dying belief. Science, and indeed the climate itself, increasingly indicate that the threat of catastrophic anthropogenic climate change has been greatly exaggerated. The public is very much aware of this, and polls show the threat of climate change rates far below concerns about the economy and government.

“A barely detectable and highly uncertain warming trend of less than a degree C over the past century has ceased for nearly two decades, and a clear trend toward more severe winter cold is apparent. This morning while I was eating breakfast, the temperature warmed as much as the average global temperature has in over a century. Despite a rate of warming about a million times faster than what is claimed for climate change, nothing catastrophic happened. In fact it was rather pleasant.The only significant effect of increased CO2 that has become apparent has been a marked global increase in plant coverage and productivity.

“Attempts to force a technologically premature adoption of renewable energy at massive economic and environmental cost has failed to yield any meaningful reduction in carbon emissions. Carbon trading has only resulted in a gigantic opportunity for fraud. 

“Technical advances in energy generation and usage, changing demographics, and market forces will in due course assure reductions in fossil fuel usage. However, to get to that point it will be vital to maintain a healthy economy. Any significant impediment to the availability of cheap reliable energy can only prolong the process and increase the risk of failure. 

“The wheels have fallen off the climate bandwagon, and the Democrats are now trying to beat its dying horse when free markets and a healthy economy could provide a self driving car and a cellphone to call it up.”

Walter Starck
Policy Advisor, Environment
The Heartland Institute
[email protected]

“The tragicomedy of the multi-decadal climate fervour continues to play out. The credibility of science is yet again tragically undermined by their feverish irrationality expressed in its name. They turn ‘awareness’ into wilful, dogmatic confusion, and ‘action’ into the punchline of a joke. Many of us would cry in despair if it were not just so deliciously, sidesplittingly absurd.”

Christopher Essex
Chairman, Permanent Monitoring Panel on Climate
World Federation of Scientists
Professor of Applied Mathematics
University of Western Ontario
[email protected]

“This is so confusing. The Japanese government told their citizens to go to bed an hour early to fight global warming. But now we are being told to stay up all night to fight global warming.

“There isn’t anything Congress can do. Cap-and-trade died, carbon tax is dead on arrival. Obama has already said he doesn’t need no stinkin’ Congress. He is doing the climate regulations through executive orders – through the EPA. So it is unclear what Senate Democrats will be doing all night. And if you have ever seen Senator Whitehouse, he is not the most thrilling guy to listen to – it is going to be a rough sled for viewers to try to stay awake all night.

“It has been 17-and-a-half years with no global warming according to the latest satellite data. The global warming activists have a serious PR problem. Every kid in high school has never experienced global warming. They have a serious task to stay up all night and do this.

“One irony, the Democrats ‘Warmathon’ will be powered up courtesy of the Capitol Building’s coal-fired power plant.

“Missing from climate all-nighter: ‘Sens. Mary Landrieu (La.), Kay Hagan (N.C.), Mark Pryor (Ark.) and Mark Begich (Alaska) are not scheduled to take part.’ GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) renewed his skepticism of climate change ahead of the all-nighter: ‘For everybody who thinks it’s warming, I can find somebody who thinks it isn’t,’ McConnell said. ‘You’re not going to have global cooperation to do it,’ McConnell said of climate rules on the coal industry. ‘Even if you conceded the point, which I don’t concede, but if you conceded the point, it isn’t going to be addressed by one country. So the idea is, we tie our own hands behind our back and others don’t. I think it’s beyond foolish and real people are being hurt by this.’ McConnell said.

“If climate is such a ‘winning’ issue, why are ‘vulnerable’ Democrats avoiding the climate slumber party? As the media reported, ‘Notably absent’ will be the four most vulnerable Senate Democrats up for reelection this year.”

Marc Morano
Executive Editor and Chief Correspondent
Policy Expert, Climate Change
The Heartland Institute
[email protected]

“Working past sundown was a privilege first afforded to the average man by the invention of pressurized lamps that burned Kerosene – a carbon-based fuel. Today, electricity from other carbon-based fuels allows any American to work and produce no matter the time of day – not the same way in other countries. Senate Democrats would be better served if they called attention to this fact rather than CO2 emissions, especially if they’re going to rely on cheap illumination to do it.”

Taylor Smith
Policy Analyst, Government Relations
The Heartland Institute
[email protected]

“Today’s climate filibuster illustrates how Barbara Boxer and the Senate Democrats’ Climate Action Task Force are living in the long-ago past. Their stated goal is to call attention to the effects of recent global warming, but there has been no global warming for the past 17 years. Maybe they will filibuster about the risks of Y2K computer mayhem while they are at it.”

James M. Taylor
Managing Editor
Environment and Climate News
Senior Fellow
The Heartland Institute
[email protected]

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.