"Whistleblower Authenticates Heartland Documents"

"Climate scientist Peter Gleick has acknowledged that he was the person who convinced the Heartland Institute to hand over the contents of its January Board package, authenticating the documents beyond a doubt and further exposing the disinformation campaign Heartland has pursued in the last week, trying to discredit the information." [Gleick called his methods in obtaining the documents an ethical lapse, and the outpouring of criticism diverted media attention from the apparent deception campaign revealed in the Heartland documents themselves. The uproar raises important issues about what methods are legitimate for investigative journalists to use in obtaining information (Gleick was not a journalist), and where the solid ground of truthfulness may be found in today's escalating conflict between science and PR. -- Ed. note]

"In the Huffington Post tonight, Gleick reported that he had received the controversial Climate Strategy document from an anonymous source earlier this year and said that he attempted to confirm whether the contents were true. Gleick went on:

    'In an effort to do so, and in a serious lapse of my own and professional judgment and ethics, I solicited and received additional materials directly from the Heartland Institute under someone else's name. The materials the Heartland Institute sent to me confirmed many of the facts in the original document, including especially their 2012 fundraising strategy and budget. I forwarded, anonymously, the documents I had received to a set of journalists and experts working on climate issues. I can explicitly confirm, as can the Heartland Institute, that the documents they emailed to me are identical to the documents that have been made public. I made no changes or alterations of any kind to any of the Heartland Institute documents or to the original anonymous communication.'

So, while admitting that he impersonated a third party in order to induce Heartland to confirm its own ongoing questionable conduct, Gleick has effectively caught Heartland squarely in the headlights, proving that the Institute has dissembled and lied."

Richard Littlemore reports for DeSmogBlog February 20, 2012.


"The Origin of the Heartland Documents" (Huffington Post)

"Peter Gleick Admits to Deception in Obtaining Heartland Climate Files" (Dot Earth)

"The Lying Game" (American Journalism Review: May 1997)

"Heartland Demands DeSmogBlog Remove 'Climate Strategy' Document" (DeSmogBlog)

"Climate Expert Peter Gleick Admits Deception in Obtaining Heartland Institute Papers" (TIME)

"Peter Gleick: Hero Or Moral Moron?" (Grist)

"Gleick Apology Over Heartland Leak Stirs Ethics Debate Among Climate Scientists" (Guardian)

"Heartland Republicans: Investigate Heartland" (Huffington Post)

"Heartland Institute Leak Exposes Strategies of Climate Attack Machine" (Guardian)

"Climate Researcher Admits Leaking Heartland Institute Documents" (Politico)

"Climate Scientist Peter Gleick Admits He Leaked Heartland Institute Documents" (Guardian)

"Activist Says He Lied to Obtain Climate Papers" (New York Times)

"Heroes and Zeroes In The Heartland: Gleick Says He Leaked Docs" (Forbes)

"Peter Gleick Admits to Stealing Heartland Documents" (Forbes)

"The Heartland Science Denial Documents and the Future of the Planet" (Greg Laden's Blog)

"Republicans for Environmental Protection vs. Heartland Institute Climate Disinformation Campaign" (Climate Science Watch)

"Leaked Heartland Institute Documents Include Plan for Climate Disinformation Curriculum in Schools" (Climate Science Watch)

Source: DeSmogBlog, 02/21/2012