A version of this blog originally appeared at DeSmogBlog.
ANY conference worth its salt needs a nice long list of sponsors to give the impression of widespread diverse support for whatever the conference organisers are advocating.
In the case of the Heartland Institute and their advocacy for the denial of the risks of human-caused climate change, their just-started conference for climate science misinformers in Chicago can boast official supporters from as far and wide as India, England, Austria and New Zealand.
But one of the most devoted and long-standing group of supporters for their climate change denial conferences over the years has come from Australia. This year there are four Australia-based groups listed as “co-sponsors” and over the history of the seven conferences no less than nine different Australian groups have been happy to have their organisation’s name hitched to Heartland’s colors.
A mistaken impression could be that there’s widespread support for Heartland’s extremist views in Australia. The word “co-sponsor” gives the impression that these organisations are willing to actually give up money to support.
Since 2008, Timothy Andrews has resided in Washington DC learning effective advocacy and grassroots mobilisation techniques from internationally recognised campaigning leaders. He was employed for two years under the tutelage of Grover Norquist at Americans for Tax Reform, universally recognised as the U.S.’s most influential tax-reduction advocacy group. Timothy Andrews was also a participant in the Koch Associate Program, an intense year-long training program by the Charles Koch Institute to train a select group of activists to become more efficient agents for change.