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Climate Skeptic Pat Michaels: 40% of My Funding is From Big Oil

Posted By Barry Ritholtz On January 6, 2011 @ 1:08 pm In Energy,UnScience,Video | Comments Disabled

I have been rather dismissive of the agnatology from global warming deniers and hacks like Pat Michaels.

The notorious climate skeptic of the CATO Institute has admitted on CNN this weekend that 40 percent of his funding comes from Big Oil. Note that is what he admits to; his disinformation campaigns might be funded in considerably greater amounts than that.

When the media quotes him, they should disclose where the funding for his “skepticism” came from. As the ExxonSecrets profile of Pat Michaels sums up well, he is “possibly the most prolific and widely-quoted climate change skeptic scientist.”

Fareed Zakaria deserves a round of applause for challenging Michaels directly to cough up a figure for how much oil money he receives to defend the status quo:

ZAKARIA: Let me ask you what people wonder about, advocates like you. They say —

MICHAELS: I’m advocating for efficiency.

ZAKARIA: Right. But people say that you’re advocating also for the current petroleum-based industry to stand pat, to stay as it is, and that a lot of your research is funded by these industries.

MICHAELS: Oh, no, no. First of all, what I’m saying is —

ZAKARIA: Well, is your research funded by these industries?

MICHAELS: Not largely. The fact of the matter is —

ZAKARIA: Can I ask you what percentage of your work is funded by the petroleum industry?

MICHAELS: I don’t know. 40 percent? I don’t know.

Not a bad investment by the oil industry: Put up 40% of the funds, but use 100% of the junk science . . .

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DISCLOSURE: We are long Arch Coal (ACI) and Suncor (SU)   As I have said, you can burn fossil fuels and own V12 cars, or even invest in the energy sector, but please don’t be hypocritical by pretending that you are not impacting the climate.

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