Thursday, December 29, 2016

Tom Harris Clearing House

Tom Harris is the executive director of the International Climate Science Coalition, an anti-science group that disseminates deceptive articles concerning climate change and global warming is support of the fossil fuel industry. The purpose of this blog is to provide a reference library of articles highlighting his activities.

Below are links to articles I have written or found concerning Mr. Harris and his practices, with the most recent on the top.

Dialogues on Global Warming

Tom Harris   

More Campaign of Deceit by Tom Harris

Tom Harris' Deceit On Display

Is Tom Harris and ICSC Going Broke?

Guest Post: Ways to Support a Truly Unbiased and Free Press

Guest Post: More on Harris' Fossil Fuel Association Deception

“Gullible” media used by fossil fuel propagandists

Tom Harris of ICSC is Engaging in Censorship

Guest Submission: More on Tom Harris' Deceitful Practices

Tom Harris Lied About Ontario Jobs

ICSC and Peabody Coal

Another Indication Deniers Are Losing the PR Battle

The Irrelevent Tom Harris: The Future of Denialism

Climate Change Deniers May Face Criminal Charges in Canada

Tom Harris Employs McCarthyism Scare Tactics

More Lies From Tom Harris

More Scientists Comment On Tom Harris' Deceptions

Effort Underway to Block Tom Harris

Tom Harris' Lies About The Temperature Record

Tom Harris - Paid Shill

1100 Dead Prove Tom Harris is Wrong 

Tom Harris Exposed


Work History and Affiliations

Harris has a long history of being associated with the tobacco and fossil fuel industries. He denies both of these affiliations and has gone to great lengths to try and hide this history, including attempts to edit Wikipedia to remove any reference of his association, but the record doesn't lie.

International Climate Science Coalition

The misnamed organization is a fossil fuel advocacy group and has received indirect dark money from the fossil fuel industry. Harris is the Executive Director.

High Park Advocacy Group

According to the Canadian Lobbyist Registration System, High Park Group (HPG) is a registered lobby for the fossil fuel industry. Harris was the Director of Operations for HPG though the fall of 2006. Even as Harris was attempting to remove any history of his association with HPG, the company website stated,
Tom Harris, Director, Ottawa Operations
Tom specializes in strategic communication and media relations and has 28 years experience in science and technology in the energy and environment, aerospace and high-tech sectors. He has worked with private companies and trade associations to successfully position these entities and their interests with media and before government committees and regulatory bodies. Tom holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical) from Carleton University and a Master of Engineering (Mechanical - thermo-fluids) from McMaster University.
"Telephone: (613) 234-3039
This statement has since been removed. Several printed articles from the period state, "Tom Harris is mechanical engineer and Ottawa Director of High Park Group, a public affairs and public policy company." You can see one of those articles here. Other, similar articles have since been removed, so here is a screen shot of one article:

APCO Worldwide

APCO Worldwide is one of the largest PR consulting firms in the world. In 1993, APCO and tobacco giant Phillip Morris created The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition (TASSC) in response to findings on the hazards of second-hand smoke.  Concerning Harris, APCO's website stated,
"Tom Harris, senior associate in APCO Worldwide's Ottawa office, specializes in strategic communication and media relations and has 25 years experience in science and technology, specifically in the energy and environment, aerospace and high-tech sectors. Mr. Harris has worked with private companies and trade associations to successfully position these entities and their interests with media and before various government committees and regulatory bodies. Specifically, he has worked with oil and gas, coal, nuclear, environmental and aerospace clients for whom he has conducted effective media and public relations campaigns."

Friends of Science

FoS is an anti-science non-profit organization funded by the fossil fuel industry for the purpose of undermining the scientific record. Tom Harris has repeatedly stated he was never employed or work for FoS. However, the record shows that is not true.

Wikipedia States:
Some of the Friends, such as Madhav Khandekar, Chris de Freitas, Tim Patterson, Sallie Baliunas and Douglas Leahey, Tom Harris,[notes 13] were present at the conference which took place in New York City at the Heartland Institute's 2008 International Conference on Climate Change in March 2008.

And, Deep Climate reveals:
It appears the connection to APCO Worldwide also came in 2002, at least by the time of the November 2002 APCO Ottawa press event, “Kyoto’s Fatal Flaws Revealed,” sponsored by Imperial Oil and Talisman Energy, among others.The event was organized by APCO consultant Tom Harris, who later produced the Friends’ first major project, the 2005 video Climate Catastrophe Cancelled.

Here is one of Harris' denials, which can be found in the comments section of my posting, Russell Cook: Climate Science Harasser.

National Resources Stewardship Project (NSRP)

NSRP was a non-profit organization devoted to climate change denial. Two of the three founding directors of the NRSP are registered Canadian energy sector lobbyists. Harris was Executive Director of NSRP beginning in  2006. 

Complector Communications, Inc.

Harris is also a director in a small business.

Heartland Institute

Heartland Institute is an conservative organization opposed to environmental laws. It has been heavily involved with climate change denial activities and campaigns to promote that second-hand smoke is harmless. It received funding from the fossil fuel and tobacco industries. Harris has a long association with Heartland. He has helped fund their International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC) and been a speaker from at least 2008 through 2015.

ICCC Video

In this video, Harris allows himself to be introduced as "Dr. Tom Harris," even though he has only a masters degree and is not a professor. Harris makes the amazing claim that preventing pollution is actually more harmful to the environment than allowing the pollution. Later, he directs the crowd to engage in a "well coordinated response" and contact newspapers after they publish one of his articles, to provide fake reviews about how much they enjoy articles by Tom Harris. He says this is to counteract the many negative comments by those who know and understand the peer reviewed science which proves global warming is caused by human activity. Harris states, 

[...] We need regular high-impact media coverage of the findings of leading scientists — not just one or two publications, but we need to have hundreds all over the world. We need to have a high degree of information sharing and cooperation between groups, so that when Vincent Gray for example has an article published in New Zealand, we can take the same piece and we can (say) submit it to newspapers all over North America and Europe.
Also, Harris very quickly says something interesting,

"We want to use the tools of the pros when it comes to lobbying".
And, yet, Harris frequently states he's not a lobbyist. Here is one example, which can be found in the comments section of my post Russell Cook: Climate Science Harasser.

Carlton College Class

Between 2009 and 2011, Tom Harris taught a course on climate change at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. The course has been evaluated and found to be lacking in science and credibility with over 140 factual errors.

Original Report: Committee for the Advancement of Scientific Skepticism:  Climate Change Denial in the Classroom

Heartland associate taught 'biased' climate course at Ottawa university

Tom Harris' Carleton University Climate Misinformation Class 

Professor criticized for course denying climate change

Climate change skeptic's university course criticized

Climate denial in Canada's classrooms

Course Outline

This is an outline of a climate change course taught at Carlton College, like the one Harris taught. Page one shows them using Biblical figures as proof of the anti-AGW message. 

Also note how he allowed himself to be referred to as "Dr. Harris" and "Professor Harris," even though he doesn't have a Ph.D., only a masters. This is a pattern of behavior for Mr. Harris.

Student Evaluations

“Incredibly terrible professor. Astounding how unqualified this man is. His exams do not reflect what he taught. You can basically answer ever question with the idea of "What does professor Harris think about this?" He shouldnt be allowed to teach the class. He has no experience in the field.”

“This professor is the worst I have ever experienced in my academic career. I took this class in my final semester of a 4 year degree and got a B-, the lowest mark I have ever received (I have a 11.2/12 GPA). Whatever he says is not on the exam IS. He made mistakes when he created the exam and constantly interrupted our writing. Horrible experience.”

“The class was alright, but not up to the quality that I've come to expect from Carleton. Prof sends out too much unnecessary information out in emails.”

“Classes seem easy - online quizzes too. Then come the exams. Even though he promised no dates or specifics, that was pretty much all he asked. One of the guest speakers was impossible to understand. Spend less time on bloopers, more time on making the class understand! Not a bird course but an ok science credit, just be prepared to study a lot.”

“Prof Hariss seems to have tried very hard in creating this course and making it interesting. He is a fairly good speaker and makes it fairly interesting. However, like others have mentioned the course is based on his opinion essentially. There are interesting points are brings out, and certainly he's not always lying, but its not a fullyhonest cour(se)”

Despotic Regimes Reprint Harris

Articles by Harris have been reprinted by North Korea and Uzbekistan. These are the official, government controlled news media. Harris' claims have now been endorsed by a couple of the most despotic regimes on the planet.

North Korea Times

Uzbekistan News.Net



Tom Harris

This source has a lot of information that Tom Harris is trying to hide. It is very informative about his dealings and associations.


Scholars and Rogues

Tom Harris – hypocritical peddler of deceitful climate change editorials

Tom Harris’ recent commentaries rife with errors and illogic 

Peddlers of climate change deceit have significant advantages over climate realists

Tom Harris distorts the maturity of global warming science and imagines expertise where little exists

Tom Harris’ commentaries intended to impede, not advance, public understanding of climate science

Analysis of “Deceptive temperature record claims”

This article reviews one of Harris' articles claiming it is meaningless to have an average surface temperature. Seven climate scientists analyzed the article and estimate its overall scientific credibility to be ‘very low, stating,
Our reviewers unanimously characterize this article as misleading and in disagreement with elementary science. The author uses a scientifically baseless argument to support his claim that an average global temperature for the surface of the Earth is a meaningless quantity.


Other sources of information on Tom Harris and ICSC

DeSmogBlog: Tom Harris 

DeSmogBlog: Talk: Tom Harris This site shows Harris' High Park bio and provides a nice summary of many articles written about Harris in DeSmogBlog.

APCO Worldwide - Tom Harris

DeSmogBlog - Heartland Institute

Mr. Harris allowing false credentials

Global warming 'skepticism' -- "coordinated local activism" 

HotWhopper: Tom Harris, Free Speech and Disinformation 

The Loneliness of Being A Skeptic in Copenhagen

Tom Harris Contradictions

Deep Climate: Tom Harris, Heartland and the 2007 Bali open letter to the UN

Deep Climate: Bali 2007 revisted




Funding Issues

The ICSC website stated, "Since its formation in 2007, ICSC has neverf received financial support from corporations, foundations or governments." But, documents from Heartland Institute shows that group donated $45,000 in 2007. When presented with this fact, ICSC removed that page. Tom Harris has continued to insist ICSC has not received money, either directly or indirectly, from the fossil fuel industry, even though Heartland is funded by that industry. 

On July 13, 2006, Tom Harris responded to a June 6, 2006, posting on WunderBlog about him. In his posting Tom Harris's WunderBlog, he wrote the following:
"My climate change writing is currently funded entirely by an elderly Toronto-based private philanthropist who also funds scientific research and so wants to see the results of this research publicized."


Articles by Tom Harris

The following are links to articles Tom Harris has placed in the news media. A quick perusal of these articles will reveal the level of deceit and anti-science rhetoric that characterizes Harris' typical writing. 

Conservatives Must Strongly Support Trump On Climate Change



Harris calls for a 'debate' on climate change. The problem is the anti-science people never want a debate and cannot produce any science to support their claims.

You can read a very well written letter to the editor about this submission by Harris at this link. Here is the opening paragraph
Tom Harris, mechanical engineer (not a climate scientist), wrote an op-ed yesterday with great magical finesse, pulling pigeons out of his hat and turtle doves from up his sleeve, while he tried to defend lawyer Scott Pruitt’s climate change denial. Mr. Pruitt knows nothing about science except perhaps a little political science. As defenders of Mr. Pruitt’s climate change misstatements, Mr. Harris quoted two philosophy professors.
You can’t make this stuff up.

This letter is notable for Harris' statement that he has never been funded by the fossil fuel industry. This is contrary to the record that clearly shows he has represented the fossil fuel industry and been a lobbyist for that industry. It also goes his practice of never answering the question about his fossil fuel association.

Harris uses a report that NOAA faked the data to call for a climate change debate. The problem is that, just like everything else Harris says, the report is fake. Even the scientist involved in the report states that there was no tampering of the data. Proof positive that Harris is a denier and not a skeptic. 

Near the beginning, Pastor Dan starts by mentioning Tom's sites which include the ICSC AND Dialogues on global warming / Tom Harris! Tom told him that the Dialogues site was not his site. How embarrassing for Tom.  Thanks for the plug, Pastor Dan.

Around 14:15 in this YouTube video Tom says...

"We may very well, we're not sure, but we may very well be causing global warming due to our carbon dioxide emissions."
Well, that is contrary to what Tom keeps trying to sell to the public. 

A new EPA approach for Pruitt

Harris says the EPA should not only stop protecting Americans from the effects of massive pollution, but also stop telling them about it.

Reader's view: Resist calls to smother climate debate

Harris makes false claims that the debate on climate change is being stifled. My response to Harris' letter can be read here.

Idea that we can manage climate change by restricting emissions of a trace gas is misguided 

More deceit by Harris, including repeating the lie that Dr. John Bates accused NOAA of manipulating the data. Here is my response I submitted:

I am writing in response to the comments made by Tom Harris, "Idea that we can manage climate change by restricting emissions of a trace gas is misguided." The reading public should be made aware that Harris is a paid shill of the fossil fuel industry and is paid to support them by putting deceptive articles in the news media. There is a wonderful example of his deception in this very letter where he states, "in light of charges by former U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientist, Dr. John Bates, that agency researchers are manipulating data to support climate alarmism." In fact, Dr. Bates did not say anything like that and after the story came out, he stated in an interview to the Associated Press that there was "no data tampering, no data changing, nothing malicious." "It's not trumped up data in any way shape or form." 

Apparently, Harris is hoping if he repeats the lie enough times, it will become accepted as truth.











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