Why I won’t be speaking at the Heartland conference

by Mark Boslough

“…you will not be getting an invitation to speak.”
–Jim Lakely, The Heartland Institute,  April, 2012, responding to my offer to speak at his “conference.”

“Thanks, again, for the invitation…  Are there any opportunities for comp registration and/or travel cost reimbursements…?”
–Jim Lakely, The Heartland Institute, July, 2011, responding to my invitation to have someone from Heartland give a presentation at my AGU session.

Here’s Lakely’s full reply to my offer last month:

From: Jim Lakely
Sent: Tuesday, April 24, 2012 10:49 AM
To: Boslough, Mark B
Subject: RE: Former NASA Scientists, Astronauts to Attend Heartland Institute Climate Conference

Mark,

We’ve invited more than two dozen scientists who are on “your side” of the debate. Considering your treatment in the press of Dr. Harrison Schmitt – who will be presenting at the conference – you will not be getting an invitation to speak.

If you’d like to attend on your own time and dime, you can register here.

Jim Lakely
Director of Communications
The Heartland Institute
One South Wacker Drive #2740
Chicago, IL 60606
office: 312.377.4000
cell: 312.731.9364
_______________________________________________

Here are Lakely’s replies to my AGU invitation last summer.  Needless to say, I didn’t get any abstracts from any of them.

Subject: RE: An invitation to present at AGU
Date: Thu, 21 Jul 2011 17:06:11 -0500
From: Jim Lakely
To: Boslough

Mark,

Thanks for the additional information. Two of the scientists we’ve run this by immediately reacted by saying PDF is unnecessary and inappropriate in this field, so I doubt that any or many of the candidates we put forward would be interested in pursuing that line of analysis. Another scientist said he might send an abstract on modelled vs. observed temperatures.

The deadline for abstracts of August 4 may be too soon for most candidates, and at least one scientist on our short list says he’ll be out of the country when the meeting takes place. But we’ll put out the word and see what we get.

Are there any opportunities for comp registration and/or travel cost reimbursements for scientists whose employers may not be willing or able to cover those expenses?

Jim Lakely
Communications Director
The Heartland Institute
19 S. LaSalle St., Suite 903
Chicago, IL 60603
office: 312.377.4000
cell: 312.731.9364
________________

From: Boslough
Sent: Tue 7/19/2011 8:35 PM
To: Jim Lakely
Subject: Re: An invitation to present at AGU

Great, thanks!

I hope one or more of them will choose to submit an abstract this year. As in past years our session is focused primarily on research to quantify the uncertainty in climate sensitivity as well as other climate-related parameters. Climate-related uncertainty is traditionally presented as an error bar (as in the 1979 Charney report and IPCC reports) but it is more common nowadays to express it in terms of a probability density function or cumulative density function. Density functions are much more useful for probabilistic risk assessment than the simplistic comparison of high-vs-low “best estimate” climate sensitivities that I’ve seen from the researchers you list (which are useless for planning and the practical applications that drive national security-related work). I’m always skeptical of researchers who don’t explicitly quantify uncertainties related to risk, because they are ignoring or avoiding the most important and practical part of the problem (and giving the appearance that they are denying the possibility that their best estimate could be wrong).

If Lindzen et al. have finally progressed to the stage of producing PDFs I’d love to be able to cite them if they have plans to publish. So far I’ve seen only very rudimentary estimates from them, where best estimates are proposed but without any attempt to calculate the associated density functions. Those you cite really should come to AGU if they have recently started doing serious work along these lines, so they can get on the UQ community’s radar screen and join the discussion. It would be nice if we could all agree that there is an overlapping continuum of estimates, and not “two sides”.

Please let them know that the abstract deadline is Aug. 4. Please send them the link to the session info: http://sites.agu.org/fallmeeting/scientific-program/session-search/328 and the link to the abstract submission page: http://agu-fm11.abstractcentral.com/.

Regards,

Mark
________________

Subject: An invitation to present at AGU
Date: Mon, 18 Jul 2011 16:29:31 -0500
From: Jim Lakely
To: Boslough

Mark,

Thanks, again, for the invitation. I believe there are several respected scientists in the field who would welcome the opportunity to speak at this event – as there are multiple and independent lines evidence arguing that the net sensitivity to carbon dioxide may be overestimated in calculations of future climate.

I think it would be good for there to be several speakers from this perspective, such as Lindzen and Spencer, who approach the subject from theoretical and observational perspectives, view, and more empirical types like Christy and Balling. In addition, it would be very interesting to provide some balance for Oreskes. I think Pat Michaels would do well for that. Another literature analyst is Craig Idso, who has done some remarkable work.

This is really not a discussion about existence or denial. It is literally a matter of degree, and I believe that many scientists (including those mentioned above) deserve to be heard – and that there should be much more open discussion about the sensitivity arguments and the nature of scientific consensus. I am sure that such a panel would enhance the dialog on climate change.

I offer you this notion rather than asking Harrison Schmitt to be the sole speaker on one side of this issue. He would probably be the first to say that he is not the best person to accept this invitation as he has not published in this or related fields.

I do not know the AGU policy on invited speakers, but I would hope you can be of some assistance to encourage participation.

Many thanks for helping to open the discussion on this important issue. I believe our recent experience at Heartland shows the importance of open communication on climate change.

Best,

Jim Lakely
Communications Director
The Heartland Institute
19 S. LaSalle St., Suite 903
Chicago, IL 60603
office: 312.377.4000
cell: 312.731.9364
________________

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Climate denialism. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Why I won’t be speaking at the Heartland conference

  1. These people should do a comedy routine. They are clearly in the wrong business.

    The Earl of Weatherfraud

  2. Pingback: The Banned Heartland Institute Presentation | puckerclust

  3. Pingback: Lord Monckton* attends the Heartland Institute Conference** | puckerclust

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s