Heartland Science Panel Brings Realism to UN Climate Conference

Published December 27, 2018

The Heartland Institute hosted an event in Katowice, Poland to advance the latest research on climate science and the high costs of government efforts to fight purported anthropogenic climate change.

Heartland’s event was held on December 4, 2018 during the two-week 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP24), which ran from December 2 through December 14.

No Science at UN Meeting

COP 24 hosted no discussions of climate science.

The UN delegates focused on how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions below the levels countries committed to in the 2015 Paris climate agreement, in response to a September 2018 report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) saying carbon dioxide emissions must be net zero by 2050 to avoid global average temperatures rising beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Negotiators also discussed how to provide funding to help developing countries adapt to future climate changes.

Heartland Provides Science, Economics

The Heartland Institute’s three-hour event, which was livestreamed and has been viewed by more than 7,000 people, presented scientific evidence indicating humans are not creating a climate crisis. Panelists also discussed the harm caused in Europe by energy policies and subsidies intended to fight purported climate change.

Craig Idso, Ph.D., chairman of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, began the session by unveiling the newest report from the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, Climate Change Reconsidered II: Fossil Fuels (see story on page 11), of which he is a lead coauthor.

The new volume, which is approximately 700 pages long, features contributions of more than 100 scientists and includes more than 2,000 citations of data from peer-reviewed scientific literature. The report says fossil fuels have brought tremendous net benefits to the United States and the world and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

IPCC ‘A Political Body’

The IPCC is a political body, not a scientific one, and promotes climate alarmism, says Idso.

“Climate alarmism … is championed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, … a political body of the United Nations,” Idso said during his presentation in Poland. “Given what is compiled in [the NIPCC] reports and the thousands of peer-reviewed articles cited therein, I can tell you with complete confidence there is absolutely no observational evidence that provides any compelling support for the contention there is something unusual, unnatural, or unprecedented about earth’s current warmth.”

Dennis Avery, who formerly served in the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of State and is a policy advisor to The Heartland Institute, which publishes Environment & Climate News, gave a presentation documenting how warmer climate periods have historically nurtured greater global crop production and benefits for human health and welfare. Climate change has only been a negative factor regarding human health and welfare in periods of cooling, Avery said. The current modest warming, like every warming period since the dawn of human civilization, will almost certainly add to the crop gains and other benefits people have enjoyed during the past century’s modest warming, Avery said.

Sun, Wind, Money

Horst Ludecke, Ph.D., an emeritus professor of physics at the University of Applied Sciences of the Saarland, documented how solar variability has driven temperature and climate change throughout history. Ludecke cited research strongly indicating solar activity remains the primary driver of climate change today as in the past, with human emissions of carbon dioxide playing at best only a minor role in the ongoing natural recovery from the Little Ice Age.

Wolfgang Mueller, general secretary of the European Institute for Climate and Energy, discussed the impact Germany’s substantial monetary and legislative support for wind power has had on electricity prices. As a result of the German government’s energy policies, Germans currently pay more than triple the price of electricity in the United States, Mueller said.

James Taylor, a senior fellow at The Heartland Institute, wrapped up with a presentation arguing the UN’s climate agenda is more about taking money and power away from individuals and sovereign nations than reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

“The UN climate agenda would strip Americans of tens of billions of dollars each year and much of our individual freedom,” Taylor said.

Solidarity Joins Climate Fight

After the symposium, leaders of the Polish Solidarity labor union’s Silesian Region invited representatives of The Heartland Institute and the European Institute for Climate and Energy to meet with union executives in Katowice and present the scientific case for climate realism.

The meeting took place at Solidarity’s Katowice offices on December 5, 2018. After the scientific presentation, Solidarity invited The Heartland Institute to collaborate with the history-making Polish labor union in developing and signing a joint statement expressing skepticism toward the UN’s climate narrative and its energy policy goals.

“We, speaking as one, believe in the restoration of the Scientific Method and the dismissal of ideological dogma at the United Nations. That means a healthy skepticism of data interpretation and policy conclusions and an end to the war on science and scientists by powerful state-backed forces,” the joint statement reads. “[We also] believe that global leaders should focus their efforts on energy affordability and availability that raise living standards around the world. … Affordable energy is absolutely necessary to lift people out of poverty and secure a brighter future for the people of the world.”

Jim Lakely ([email protected]) is director of communications for The Heartland Institute.


“Joint Declaration Between Solidarity and The Heartland Institute,” December 5, 2018: https://heartland.org/news-opinion/news/press-release-solidarity-heartland-institute-sign-historic-climate-communique-at-cop24

“Climate Event, Katowice, Poland,” The Heartland Institute, December 4, 2018: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sC1N1-Okm1c