Wednesday, February 15, 2012

About the Heartland climate denial documents leak

2012-02-22 update:  Ouch.
Documents from the Heartland Institute regarding their climate confusion efforts have been leaked to climate bloggers (blogs like DeSmogBlog and Deep Climate have been on the case ), coinciding with the release of John Mashey's 50200+pp report Fake science, fakexperts, funny finances, free of tax, which makes the case that these "501(c)(3) nonprofits" sure look a lot like lobbying outfits.
The more quoted parts are all from the leaked Strategy document, that Heartland's calling a "total fake".  DeSmogBlog appears unconvinced that the content is  fake.  Among the document's revelations was that Heartland had pledged to find ~90k in funding for Russ Steele's fellow climate denier, Chico-based Anthony Watts, for a new "temperature measurements" website; Watts reportedly has confirmed this.  (Which doesn't let us conclude that the document was legitimate, just that whoever wrote it was in the know.)

Michael Tobis has asked whether trumpeting the leak is the right thing to do.

Heartland (which didn't respond to requests for comment yesterday, correct?)  said today in a press release that their staff had sent out internal docs to an email address not of a board member, that it appeared to be subterfuge, that the docs might have been altered, and that the "strategy" document is fraudulent.  They're threatening to sue:
The individuals who have commented so far on these documents did not wait for Heartland to confirm or deny the authenticity of the documents. We believe their actions constitute civil and possibly criminal offenses for which we plan to pursue charges and collect payment for damages, including damages to our reputation. We ask them in particular to immediately remove these documents and all statements about them from the blogs, Web sites, and publications, and to publish retractions.
My own assessment is that it's too early to tell what this really is, and while I have hunches as to what's afoot, they're not ready to see the light of day.

To follow climate bloggers' take on this story, check the (updated twice daily) aggregator at .

No comments: