Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Heartland's Climate Denial Campaign Targets Public Schools

The fossil fuel front group known as the Heartland Institute is at the forefront of efforts to decieve our children. Climate denial comes in many forms but the most unconscionable disinformation efforts involve the targeting of kids in their classrooms. Whether they call themselves climate skeptics or climate realists, the goal of climate deniers at the Heartland Institute is to misinform the public including our children.

Fossil fuel front groups have been emboldended by the election of Donald Trump and the GOP's control of both legislative chambers.  Exxon and the whole fossil fuel industry have been at war with science for many years now. The dirty energy industry has used Heartland to orchestrate multiple misinformation campaigns. Heartland publishes pseudo-science with the intent of sewing doubt about the veracity of climate change. Their narrative is ultimately about slowing our transition away from fossil fuels. They dispute the fact that fossil fuels are the primary driver of climate change and they even try to argue the benefits of global warming.

An article on the Heartland Institute written by Katie Worth indicates that the Heartland Institute is encouraging 200,000 teachers in the US to lie to our kids. This deceitful piece of subterfuge may best be described as the Mein Kampf of climate denial. It is dishonestly titled, "Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming" and they are sending it out to every public school science teacher in the nation. They also sent a DVD to maximize the impact of their obfuscation. In total around 200,000 K-12 science teachers are on the mailing list.

The fossil fuel powered agenda of the book is evident from the start. The foreword was written by Marita Noon, executive director of Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy, which advocates and lobbies for the fossil fuel industry. In the opening paragraph Noon dismisses Obama’s description of climate change as the greatest threat facing mankind calling the idea, "laughable".

This is but the latest iteration of the Heartland Institute's efforts to deny children a fact-based education. In both 1998 and 2012 the Heartland Institute targeted teachers with a similar cavalcade of lies disseminating curriculums that are rooted in climate denial.

At its annual conference, earlier this year in Washing D.C. Heartland president and co-founder President Joseph Bast celebrated the Trump administration and the GOP's promotion of fossil fuels. "This is a wonderful time to be a global warming realist," Bast said. "Those of us in the room who have been working on this issue for a decade or longer can finally stand up and say hallelujah and welcome to the party. The IPCC — and all the mainstream media and environmental extremists who cite it uncritically — really have become a joke in the scientific community."

Sadly Heartland's unscrupulous efforts to misinform appears to be working. In a survey of 1,500 science teachers in the US, almost one-third (31 percent) of teachers indicated that they tell their students that the cause of climate change is still being debated. Approximately 10 percent teach their students that humans have no significant role in climate change. Incredibly, some teachers have even asked Heartland to supply speakers to help educate their students.

Related
The Right Wants to Crush Climate Science in Our Schools
Kids are Being Denied a Science-Based Climate Education
Climate Science Bill of Rights and a Fact-Based Education
Keep Climate Denial Out of Our Schools
Sham Hearings Make a Mockery out of Climate Science
Heartland Institute's Fear Mongering in Climate Friendly California
Heartland Institute’s Deniergate: A New Definition for Irony
California's Climate Leadership and the Losers who Strive to Undermine these Gains
Bill McGibben: The Planet Wreckers
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Make sure to see the article titled, "Comprehensive Green School Information and Resources." It contains links to over 350 posts covering everything you need to know about sustainable academics, green school buildings, student eco-initiatives, and college rankings as well as a wide range of related information and resources.

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