February 16, 2012
Corporations Fund Anti-Climate Change Education
The Heartland Institute, a Libertarian thinktank that questions current climate science, has inadvertently revealed who funded their operations.
According to leaked emails, a single private donor funds most of their operations. Other donors include tobacco giants Altria and Reynolds America, GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer and Eli Lilley, and Microsoft.Other donors include Bill Gates, who regularly gives speeches promoting clean energy and works to help farmers in developing countries, according to the Guardian.
Microsoft claims, though, that their gift was that of free software. Katie Stainer, a spokeswoman for Microsoft says, “Microsoft´s position on climate change remains unchanged. Microsoft believes climate change is a serious issue that demands immediate, worldwide attention and we are acting accordingly. We are pursuing strategies and taking actions that are consistent with a strong commitment to reducing our own impact as well as the impact of our products.”
The GM Foundation, another Heartland donor, also opposes Heartland´s view on climate change. The Foundation claims to have given Heartland modest donations for causes not related to climate change. Greg Martin, GM´s director of policy and Washington communications said, “We support a variety of organizations that give careful and considerate thought to complex policy issues and Heartland is one of them.”
One of the projects that Heartland is planning with its donated corporate funds is a K-12 school curriculum on climate change that is not alarmist in nature. They are hiring Dr. David Wojick who “has conducted extensive research on environmental and science education for the Department of Energy,” according to the Heartland report.
Dr. Wojick, who has a Ph.D. In the philosophy of science and mathematical logic and a B.S. in civil engineering, is proposing some modules for different grade levels. For grades 10-12 the module will focus on “whether humans are changing the climate is a major controversy, how “models are used to explore various hypotheses about how climate works”, and “whether CO2 is a pollutant is controversial.”
Grades 7-9 will study how “environmental impact is often difficult to determine. For example there is a major controversy over whether or not humans are changing the weather.” And grade 6 will look at water resources and weather systems.
Heartland will pay Dr. Wojick $5,000 per module, around $25,000 a quarter, for this work.
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