Clash at Papal Summit Over Climate Change Shows Debate Turning 'Nasty'

April 28th, 2015 5:57 PM

During a press conference in Vatican City on Tuesday, people described as “papal heavies” interrupted “an awkward question” being asked by Marc Morano -- publisher of the skeptical Climate Depot website -- who wanted to know what Ban Ki-Moon, secretary-general of the United Nations, thinks about climate change deniers.

According to an article written by James Dellingpole for the site, Morano was asking the U.N. official if he had a message for the delegation of scientists who had flown to Rome to urge Pope Francis to “reconsider his ill-advised position climate change” as part of an exchange that has recently been described as “nasty” and “almost like denying gravity.”

“But before he could finish,” Dellingpole stated, “the conference hosts cut him off to ask which organization he worked for, then directed the microphone to a more tame questioner, while a security guard came over to mutter in Morano’s ear: 'You have to control yourself or you will be escorted out of here.'”

Morano joined a delegation from the Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based think tank that has often questioned the science behind human-caused climate change, in attending the event organized by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences to inform Pope Francis: “There is no global warming crisis!”

The Climate Depot website states:

The Pope has picked a contentious scientific issue in which -- now going on almost two decades of no global warming, sea ice recovering, sea level rise rates stable to even decelerating, on almost every metric from polar bears on down -- the global warming narrative has weakened.

Dellingpole reported that he, Morano and Christopher Monckton (a member of the Heartland delegation) “only narrowly made it into the carefully stage-managed conference where [they] were apparently not welcome.”

“Ah, so you made it in here?” a surprised member of the Vatican press team asked Morano when he realized that “a heaven-sent shower of torrential rain had created such chaos that security wasn’t as tight as it might have been.”

“However, the three skeptics ... were watched very carefully throughout the proceedings lest they attempt to ruffle the feathers of key speakers Ban Ki-Moon, left-wing economist Jeffrey Sachs and Cardinal Turkson, the Ghanaian priest who has been co-ordinating the Vatican’s position on 'climate change,'” the reporter stated.

Nevertheless, “Ban did answer a similar question, albeit one expressed more delicately by a journalist from the Catholic media.” His response?

Religion and science are united on the need for action on climate.

I don’t think faith leaders should be scientists. I’m not a scientist. What I want is their moral authority. Business leaders and all civil society is on board [with the mission to combat climate change]. Now we want faith leaders. Then we can make it happen.

Morano expressed a different point of view:

Instead of entering into an invalid marriage with climate fear promoters -- a marriage that is destined for an annulment -- Pope Francis should administer last rites to the promotion of man-made climate fears and their so-called solutions. This unholy alliance must be prevented.

The Pope has been misled on climate science, and his promotion of the U.N. agenda will only mean the poor will be the biggest victims of climate change policies -- just as the global warming narrative has weakened.

The clash came soon after Timothy Cana of The Hill declared: “The debate over climate science has taken a nasty turn.”

Cana quoted vice president Joe Biden as painting skeptics of climate change as “stupid.”

“I think it’s close to mindless,” he said of skeptics on the HBO program Vice. “I think it’s like, you know, almost like denying gravity now.”

“The fight over climate change has always featured some sharp arrows in Washington,” Cana stated, “but the debate has taken on a nastier, sometimes personal tone in 2015.”

Riley Dunlap, a sociology professor at the University of Oklahoma, said the nasty rhetoric comes in waves.

“The opposition to acting on climate change is very upset,” he said. “They don’t want to see any of these things take place ... so they ratchet up the attacks.”

Meanwhile, Christopher Monckton – a former advisor to Margaret Thatcher, a longtime prime minister of England -- said:

It is not the business of the Pope to stray from the field of faith and morals, and wander into the playground that is science. Do not invite only one narrow and boisterous scientific viewpoint that has been repeatedly discredited as events and the science and the data have unfolded.

In addition, Morano said that setting unsustainable goals would merely be “confusing to many Catholics around the world,” and at the end of the day, “no one cares” what Francis and the Vatican think about climate science.