Journalist Booted from Denial-Palooza for "Advocacy"

June 17, 2015

Not all journalists were welcome at the Heartland Institute's annual conference messaging doubt about climate change June 11, 2015. Brendan Montague, editor of DeSmog UK, was denied a press pass for the event and escorted from the meeting site by hotel security.

Many reporters did cover the conference, dubbed the 10th International Conference on Climate Change, and many of those wrote unfavorable pieces. The Heartland Institute, which sponsored the event, denies that human activity is causing problematic global warming (a proposition almost all climate scientists agree on), and gets major funding from fossil-fuel interests.

DeSmog UK said Montague's press pass had been withdrawn, but Heartland Communication Director Jim Lakely said Montague had been informed he would not get a pass and that it had been issued by mistake. Lakely said the pass was denied because Montague was "not a real journalist" since DeSmog was "an advocacy organization."

Some back story: Heartland has fielded a "pre-buttal" press conference to counter a Vatican press conference on climate change April 28, 2015 — advocating against Pope Francis' advocacy. Later, at the Vatican press conference, "Vatican heavies" (to use Breitbart's phrasing) had shut down questioning by climate denial advocate Marc Morano at the Vatican's meeting.

SEJ Publication Types: 
Topics on the Beat: