Heartland Institute Funding and Spending in Context
See update on scientist Peter Gleick's role in the case.
The blogosphere and Twitterverse lit up today with outrage over the contents of alleged strategy and budget documents leaked from the Heartland Institute. The alleged documents reveal the identity of corporate and foundation donors to the conservative organization as well as the organization's alleged efforts to undermine public belief in climate science.
See reporting by the Guardian, Politico, New York Times, the NY Times' Dot Earth blogger Andrew Revkin, and Mother Jones with Heartland's response. The Atlantic has perhaps the best overview on why the alleged strategy memo is likely a fake.
Relative to the alleged budget and fundraising documents, important to keep in mind is the relative amount of donations and spending involved in comparison to funding and spending by green groups. As I detailed in the Climate Shift report, conservative think tanks can be incredibly efficient and effective with their activities on a relatively small budget.
For discussion and to see how the 2009 budget and spending of the Heartland Institute compares to other conservative think tanks and to environmental groups, see Chapter 1 of the report. For discussion and to see how Koch foundation and corporate donations to Heartland and other conservative think tanks compare to philanthropic support for environmental groups, see Chapter 2 of the report.
Methane is 80 times more effective than carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the atmosphere.