Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow

Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT)

 Background

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1985 to pursue a free-market approach to environmental issues. CFACT describes their role as “relentlessly infusing the environmental debate with a balanced perspective on environmental stewardship.” [1]

In 2009, CFACT hired Marc Morano, a former spokesman for Sen. James Inhofe, to run ClimateDepot.com which describes itself as a “Project of CFACT.” According to Morano, the site was designed to offer research and environmental news that questions the theory of man-made global warming.

Another CFACT project/website named Energy Depot has since been launched, and features articles opposing green energy initiatives.

Stance on Climate Change

Below is CFACT's complete statement on Climate Change:

“Earth’s climate changes frequently, sometimes beneficially, sometimes disastrously (as during repeated glacial periods and the Little Ice Age of 1350-1850), as a result of shifting and interacting solar, cosmic,  oceanic, atmospheric and other forces that we are only beginning to understand. While some continue to insist that human 'greenhouse gas' emissions are causing potentially catastrophic changes in climate and weather, growing numbers of scientists say nature, not man, rules the climate and causes changes of varying extent and significance every few decades, centuries and millennia.
 
Humans, plants and wildlife have survived and even prospered during past climate changes – and will continue to do so. Indeed, our technology and wealth will make people and civilizations much better able to prepare for and adapt to most climate changes, although another Pleistocene-scale ice age would devastate northern cities, decimate agricultural production, and drive human and species migrations.
 
Computer models are helpful for improving our understanding of how weather and climate systems work and change over time. However, because they are based on poor data and false, questionable or simplistic premises, they are useless in forecasting future climate and weather. Moreover, actual temperature and weather data demonstrate that alarmist warnings of dangerous global warming are not supported by reality. Regulating carbon dioxide may be profitable for certain industries and governments, but will impose enormous costs on society – while having no effect on our weather and climate.
 
Today, the real danger is laws and policies implemented in a misplaced belief that humans can control or prevent climate change. These policies raise energy costs, kill jobs, impose especially heavy burdens on poor families, and make it hard for still impoverished nations to develop, provide affordable energy, create jobs, and improve lives and living standards. Moreover, even drastic reductions in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions will mean nothing globally, because China, India and other developing nations are now emitting far more CO2 than the United States could eliminate even by shutting down its economy.” [2]
CFACT has also listed Carbon Dioxide as a “benefit” in the past:

“Many climatologists and astrophysicists believe recent sun spot, Pacific Ocean and global temperature trends suggest that our planet may have entered a cool phase that could last for 25 years. If that is the case, the additional carbon dioxide being emitted by China, India and other developing countries could bring a major additional benefit: helping to protect wildlife habitats, enhance oceanic biota and preserve crop yields under sub-optimal climatic conditions.” [3]

CFACT is a member of the Cooler Heads Coalition, which describes its aim as “dispelling the myths of global warming through sound science and analysis.” [4]

 Funding

Media Matters's Conservative Transparency project breaks down CFACT's funding as follows (1991 to 2013): [5]

Armstrong Foundation $20,000
Chase Foundation of Virginia $17,000
Donors Capital Fund $325,000
DonorsTrust $7,534,387
Dunn's Foundation for the Advancement of Right Thinking $107,000
Exxon Mobil $467,000
Same Line Foundation $1,000
Sarah Scaife Foundation $935,000
The Carthage Foundation $1,405,000
The Challenge Foundation $10,000
The Robertson-Finley Foundation $18,000
Grand Total $10,839,387

As reported above, CFACT received a total of $325,000 from Donors Capital Fund (DCFbetween 2005 and 2010, and a total of $7,534,387 from DonorsTrust (DT) between 2008 and 2012. Both DonorsTrust and DCF distribute millions of dollars to conservative and free enterprise groups while concealing the identiy of the original donors. 

DeSmogBlog reported how DT and DCF have distributed over $170 million over the years to fund groups blocking climate change action, while $479 million of the group's income can be described as “dark money” that is coming from individuals our groups who have not declared their donations.

According to the latest report from ExxonSecrets, CFACT has received $582,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998. [6]

Key People

CFACT Staff  [7]

The following were listed on the CFACT website as of July, 2015

CFACT Board of Advisors [8]

Previous Staff

The following is from the CFACT Website, accessed December, 2011: [9]

Past Board of Advisors

 Actions

June, 2015

A fundraising letter was penned on behalf of The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow that seeks $425,000 (requested by S. Fred Singer) in order to work against the United Nations deal on global warming, which Singer calls the “radical, economy-wrecking and sovereignty-destroying UN climate pact.”

A leaked copy of the letter, sent to CFACT supporters, was obtained by The Guardian. “This is a very dangerous treaty and it is something that we think should not be supported by the international community,” said Craig Rucker, the executive director of CFACT. “We want to make sure it doesn’t happen.” [10]

The letter describes 2015 as a “make or break year” for climate, and says the $425,000 would be used to send a group of “climate truth tellers” to the talks in Paris. Additional funds would go to a spoiler film by Marc Morano

June 11 - 12, 2015

CFACT is listed as a co-sponsor of the Heartland Institute's Tenth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC10) held in Washington, DC. [11]

Other co-sponsors of the event included the following organizations:

April 28, 2015

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) sent representatives to the conference on climate change at the Vatican.

According to the Heartland Institute“Unfortunately, they [Heartland and CFACT representatives] were not allowed to speak at the conference; but they created sensational news across the world by well attended press conferences.” [12]

July, 2014

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow started producing a documentary hosted by Marc Morano titled “Climate Hustle: The Global Warming Shakedown.” [13]

The documentary reported to “cool down the global warming hype.” CFACT started with the goal to raise $250,000 in donations to cover the produciton, marketing, and distribution of the film to get it into as many theaters and large cities as possible.

Trailer below:

According to the film's website, the project recieved donations from 1,490 backers and reached a total of $251,514 in funding towards production and distribution.

November, 2013

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) declared in a UN-sanctioned press conference during COP19 talks that the world should be following Australia's lead in repealing laws to price carbon emissions. [14]
 
CFACT's Marc Morano described coal as “the moral choice, particularly for the developing world.”
“The model for the world right now should be Australia,” Morano said. “Australia gets it. Scientifically they get it, politically they get it and particularly when it comes to the United Nations, they get it. They are pulling out of this, they are repealing their carbon tax and Canada seems to be intrigued by what Australia is doing.”
 
“Australia gets it - they have realised what the United Nations is doing here today. Viva Australia - let's hope the world follows Australia's model,” said Morano.
81-year-old former Apollo astronaut Walter Cunningham also spoke at the CFACT conference, admitting he was no climate scientist.  
“Sceptics like us are challenged to disprove their hypothesis,” Cunningham said. “Scientists are best qualified to deal with the scientific questions but we all have to deal with the financial consequences of any actions taken on bad science.”
“In the 1980s a small group of individuals became concerned about the Earth's temperature and what it might do in the future. I hesitate to call them scientists because they have abandoned their scientific principals by which their guess about temperature increases and the cause could achieve scientific acceptance or rejection.”
He criticised some climate scientists for being “alarmists”, but then described measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions as a “fight to avoid the economic destruction of our society.” He said scientists had “dreamed up” the hypothesis of human caused climate change and had convinced  “most of the media” that the science was solid.
 
See video of the Q&A portion of the press conference below:

May 21 - 23, 2012

CFACT was an official Co-sponsor of the Heartland Institute's Seventh International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC7). [15]

December, 2011

CFACT generated media attention at the COP17 Conference in Durban when they parachuted onto a Durban beach waving “Climategate 2.0” banners. Accompanying them was prominent climate change skeptic Lord Christopher Monckton.

Later in the day, CFACT arranged a press conference with Senator Inhofe where they released Climate Depot's new “A-Z Climate Reality Check” special report. [16]

December, 2009

CFACT hosted an event called The Copenhagen Climate Challenge at the same time as the COP15 conference in Copenhagen.

Craig Rucker, Executive Director of CFACT, spoke to the press:

“We think there is no consensus on climate change and there should not be a treaty from Copenhagen based on a lack of consensus.” [17]

Ian Plimer was reported to be “a star attraction of the two-day event” which also featured Fred Singer, Nils Axel Morner, and other climate change skeptics. [18]

December, 2007

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow sent a set of delegates to the thirteenth United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), including a number of prominent climate change skeptics including the following: [19]

August 2, 2002

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow was one of a group of right-wing think tanks including Americans for Tax Reform, the American Enterprise Institute, and the Competitive Enterprise Institute who lobbied for President Bush to boycott the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg. Bush did not attend. [20]

June 7, 2002

CFACT President David Rothbard signed a letter to President Bush that asked him to withdraw the “Climate Action Report 2002.”

The letter summarized that Bush should direct that the report “be re-written on the basis of sound science and without relying on discredited products of the previous administration.”

The report adds that Bush should “dismiss or re-assign all administration employees who are not pursuing your agenda, just as you have done in several similar instances.” [21]

September 27, 2000

CFACT and the National Center for Public Policy Research awarded Congressman Helen Chenoweth- Hage (R-ID) the new “Friend of American Freedom Award” which recognized her for her “distinguished record of defending the United States against environmental treaties, United Nations (U.N.) programs and other globalist policies that pose a threat to the nation's sovereignty.” [22]

Related Organizations

 Resources

  1. About,” CFACT. Archived July 15, 2015.

  2. Climate Change,” CFACT. Archived July 15, 2015.

  3. Carbon and carbon dioxide: Clearing up the confusion,” CFACT News, May 9, 2011.

  4. About GlobalWarming.org. “Archived April 21, 2006.

  5. Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow,” Conservative Transparency. Archived July 15, 2015.

  6. ExxonSecrets Factsheet: CFACT - Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow.

  7. CFACT Staff,” Archived July 15, 2015. 

  8. CFACT Board of Advisors,” CFACT. Archived July 15, 2015.

  9. Who We are…CFACT, archived December 27, 2011. 

  10. Suzanne Goldenberg. “US climate deniers call Paris summit 'a threat' to the world,” The Guardian, June 26, 2015. Archived July 3, 2015.

  11. Sponsors,” ICCC10. Archived July 15, 2015.

  12. James H. Rust. “Pope Francis' Encyclical on Global Warming Fails,” The Heartlander, June 23, 2015. Archived July 15, 2015.

  13. Donald Kendal. “Climate Hustle: The Global Warming Shakedown,” Somewhat Reasonable, November 13, 2014. Archived July 15, 2015.

  14. Graham Readfearn. “Climate Denial Group CFACT Congratulates Australia During Warsaw Talks,” DeSmogBlog, November 19, 2013.

  15. Cosponsors,” 7th International Conference on Climate Change. Archived June 23, 2012.

  16. CFACT makes media waves at COP17 climate talks,” CFACT News, December 8, 2011. Archived July 15, 2015.

  17. Copenhagen climate summit: Behind the scenes at the sceptics' conference,” The Telegraph, December 9, 2009. Archived July 15, 2015.

  18. Lenore Taylor. “Plimer the toast of Copenhagen sceptics meeting,” The Australian, December 10, 2009. Archived with WebCite, July 15, 2015.

  19. List of participants” (PDF), United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, December 14, 2007. Archived July 15, 2015.

  20. (Press Release) “Africa: Corporate-funded Lobbyists Aimed to Sabotage Johannesburg Summit,” AllAfrica.com, August 19, 2002. Archived July 15, 2015.

  21. Fred L. Smith, Jr. “Joint Letter to President Bush On the EPA's Climate Action Report,” Competitive Enterprise Institute, June 7, 2002. Archived July 15, 2015.

  22. Congressman Helen Chenoweth-Hage Honored With “Friend of American Freedom Award,” Press Release: The National Center fore Public Policy Research, September 28, 2000. Archived July 15, 2015.

  23. Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow,” SourceWatch Profile.

  24. Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow,” Wikipedia entry.