The 2008 International Conference on Climate Change that recently convened in New York showcased an impressive array of scientists, economists and academics united in their concerns over the state of climate science and the lack of robust debate within the scientific community. Hosted by the Heartland Institute and featuring such distinguished guests as Hungarian Physicist Dr. Miklós Zágoni, Lord Christopher Monckton of Britain, Czeckoslovakian President Vaclav Klaus, ABC Journalist John Stossel, and the founding Director of Meteorology at The Weather Channel, Joseph D’Aleo, the conference served as a forum for several hundred noteworthy experts to meet and present their evidence that the severity and causes of global warming remain unknown and speculative, and that the actions presently being undertaken to address climate change would cause much economic harm to those in both the developed and developing world.
CFACT, which was a co-sponsor of the event, sent a number of staff and advisors to hand out fact sheets, man a display table, conduct interviews with media representatives, and participate on panels to add their expertise to the numerous discussions taking place. Among those attending the conference included CFACT executive director Craig Rucker, policy analyst Paul Driessen, scientific advisor Howard Hayden, CFACT Europe executive director Dr. Holger Thuss, environmental programs officer Duggan Flanakin, development director Meredith McLain, and Collegians director Bill Gilles.
Dreissen, who represented CFACT as a panelist, took special aim at the costs that will be imposed by those seeking to drastically curtail greenhouse emissions by curbing energy use. “As is usually the case,” Driessen quipped, “poor, disadvantaged, minority and fixed-income families will feel the pain first and worst. Many could be forced to choose between heating and eating. Others will be turned into permanent energy welfare recipients. People in impoverished Third World countries will be condemned to permanent deprivation and misery.”
Hayden, a professor emeritus from the University of Connecticut, also served as a panelist and discussed concerns he had over claims that rising CO2 levels would by necessity facilitate a runaway warming effect. Showing slides which included pictures he had taken near his home in Colorado, Dr. Hayden revealed that nature mitigates many of the impacts spurred by warming temperatures and increasing precipitation and offsets what many erroneously believe are positive feedbacks.
The Collegians For A Constructive Tomorrow also set up a table at the event to disseminate fact sheets, reports and information about its activities to bring a sound environmental message to America’s college campuses. Ryan Nichols, the campus coordinator for the University of Wisconsin at Madison, said the conference was a wonderful opportunity for him to “learn first hand” from those who work directly in the field of science, and he intends to invite some of those who spoke to come and visit his campus over the coming year.
Appropriately, the conference was prominently carried on media outlets worldwide, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, among many others. Organizers hope a similar event will be carried out next year, possibly in London, as we believe this even-keeled message will continue to build momentum in the public eye over the coming months and years ahead.