David Schnare

David Schnare

​David W. Schnare


  • J.D., George Mason University School of Law (1999).
  • Ph.D., Environmental Management, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (1979).
  • M.Sc., Public Health-Environmental Science, University of North Carolina School of Public Health.
  • Bachelor's Degree (chemistry and math major), Cornell College in Mt. Vernon, Iowa.

Source: [1], [2]


David Schnare is General Counsel at the Energy and Environment Legal Institute (formerly American Tradition Institute), as well as the “Director of the Center for Environmental Stewardship” at the Thomas Jefferson Institute. Schnare is the past Director of the Occoquan Watershed Coalition, and Chairman of the Coalition’s Environment and Land Use Committee. He is CEO of Schnare and Associates, Inc.

The Thomas Jefferson Institute lists Schnare as an attorney and scientist who “managed EPA’s Office of Ground-Water and Drinking Water Economic, Legislative and Policy Analysis Branch and has made contributions on a variety of environmental and policy issues.”

Schare has called for “geoengineering as a means to put off the most catastrophic potential effects of global warming, at least for a few decades…” [3]

Stance on Climate Change

“When it comes to global warming, I'm a skeptic because the conclusions about the cause of the apparent warming stand on the shoulders of incredibly uncertain data and models…” [4]

Schnare has said that it is too late to curb global warming because “The world has already exceeded the greenhouse gas emissions 'tipping point' beyond which catastrophic warming cannot be stopped.” [5]

He believes that the IPCC's science “could be wrong. But it could also be right. And, what if the IPCC predictions are true? Then, as the first truth states, it's too late, and the climate scientific community has admitted as much.” [6]

Key Quotes

April 22, 2014

Speaking at The Heritage Foundation's Happy Earth Day: Dispelling Environmental Myths and Celebrating Human Achievement event, Schnare, at 27:23 states:

“What we really need to do is to admit, as has been said already, is that we’ve succeeded. There is no one single good measure for water quality, but there is a sort of general measure: is the water “impaired” based on what the state said the quality of the water ought to look like. And, so, if you look at all the waters of the United States, and there’s over 300,000 of them, sorry, there’s over 300,000,000 of them—I can’t remember being a lawyer and a scientist—sometimes those numbers can collide, but the bottom line is most of them are not impaired, and those that are impaired, are impaired from natural causes… You know, the deer have to go to the bathroom somewhere.” [16]

At 34:12 Schnare then says:

“Today, maybe I’m a scientist, but I’m also a lawyer, and when I left the [Environmental Protection] Agency someone asked me and said ‘well, what are you going to do?’ and, I said, ‘I’m going to sue the agency,’ and they went, 'oh no.' And so, [since then] we have [sued]…” [16]

February 17, 2011

“The energy windmills offer is not free, not clean, not reliable and not consistent. And it doesn’t create new jobs.” [11]

May 18, 2010

“Those of us familiar with the coal-fired power plant industry have long recognised that CCS may be slightly more than a pipe-dream, but will never be affordable or practicable for the vast majority of coal-fired plants. Yet no one in the bureaucracy has had the courage to stand up and refute this politically correct but scientifically bankrupt concept.” [9]

May 12, 2010

“Tea Parties are scathingly and properly scathingly opposed to the climate change proposals that have emerged over the past decade. They see the economic consequences of such action, and applying the principles of 'opportunity costs' and the need for honest science, including full transparency in the scientific discussion.” [10]

March 16, 2010

“These propagandists [Stephen Schneider and other scientists involved in 'Climategate'] are not to be confused with the majority of scientists who have no political agenda and who simply want to be scientists. These are often the scientists who are under attack and should not be. Among them are Richard Lindzen, MIT, Roger Pielke, Sr., University of Colorado – Boulder, and John Christy, UAH. These people refuse to go beyond where observation takes them. They are under attack because they refuse to participate in the propaganda campaigns.” [8]

March 16, 2008

“The Virginia plan to reduce greenhouse gases by a mere 30 percent by 2020 is too little, too late and so is the even more aggressive IPCC proposal to reduce them by 80 percent.” [5]

September 26, 2007

“As Ken Caldeira, a professor of climate science at Stanford University, explains, reducing greenhouse gases will cost around 2 percent of the gross domestic product while geo-engineering (by putting reflective aerosols into the upper atmosphere) will cost about one-thousandth of that.” [7]

Key Deeds

April 22, 2014

Schnare is a speaker at The Heritage Foundation's “Happy Earth Day: Dispelling Environmental Myths and Celebrating Human Achievement” event. [16]

See the video footage here:

June 30-July 1, 2011

Schnare was a speaker at the Heartland Institute's Sixth International Conference on Climate Change. [12]

Nov, 2008

Featured speaker (PDF) at the fall Climate Change Conference sponsored by the National Chamber of Commerce and the Virginia Chamber. [13]

This conference “brought scores of business leaders together to discuss the climate change/environmental issues facing our nation and our state.”

Schnare advocated geo-engineering in his presentation where he explained that through “artificially seeding the atmosphere with non-polluting reflective particles (that slowly descend to the surface of the earth) we can keep the earth’s atmosphere cool as we work to find economically feasible alternatives to carbon-based fuels.” He concludes that “this is a more acceptable concept than severely restricting our economic growth through drastic government regulation.” [14]

April, 2008

Spoke at the Heartland Institute's 2008 International Conference on Climate Change where he introduced his paper (.pdf), titled “Climate Change and the Uncomfortable Middle Ground: The Geoengineering and 'No Regrets' Policy Alternative,” which was published by the Jefferson Institute for Public Policy. [3]

Although the paper does imply that global warming may be due in part to increases in Greenhouse Gases caused by humans, he believes that it is too late to try to reduce our emissions.

The abstract states that our situation “calls for geoengineering as a means to put off the most catastrophic potential effects, at least for a few decades; an immediate reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) where those reductions actually save money (the “no regrets” alternatives); significantly expanded use of and research on low-cost carbon sequestration that removes GHGs from the atmosphere or reduces carbon emissions; and some breathing space within which to further assess some of the global warming theories that, if disproven, would point humanity toward lesser or greater reliance on alternative climate change responses.”

Schnare continues, stating that “A perusal of [the Geophysical Research Letters journal], however, finds well documented, peer- reviewed papers indicating there appears to be some merit to arguments that warming over the past 40 years reflects a normal, if chaotic cycle that may overlay anthropogenic (human caused) warming, but alone explains the majority of observed warming.”

For support, Schanre quotes skeptical scientists such as Petr Chylek, Dennis Avery, Fred Singer and Alan Carlin. The suggested geo-engineering projects are reminiscent of those recommended by Bjorn Lomborg including ocean-based cloud creation, ocean fertilization, and ocean carbon sequesterization.

Schnare also describes “High Cost Actions” that would be too expensive to implement to reduce carbon emissions including:

  • All forms of direct solar power (photovoltaic and CSP)
  • Residential and commercial HVAC high efficiency equipment (a LEED element)
  • Carbon Capture at coal-fired power plants and carbon-intensive industrial processes
  • Re-forestation of crop land
  • Medium and high penetration onshore wind power
  • Biomass power generation
  • Shifting from coal to gas electricity generation
  • Hybrid automobiles

September 26, 2007

Testified before the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, referencing his report titled “Responses to Climate Change and their Implications on Preservation and Restoration of the Chesapeake Bay” where he argues that we need to apply geo-engineering to prevent global warming, and that “any investments in reducing greenhouse gases…would be the greatest threat to the [Chesapeake] Bay.” [7]



A Google Scholar search returns one article written by David Schnare on the subject of climate, titled “Climate Change and the Uncomfortable Middle Ground,” published by the Thomas Jefferson Institute. He has not published any articles on climate in peer-reviewed journals.


  1. Staff and Scholars,” Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy. Accessed February, 2012.

  2. Senior Leadership,” Energy and Environment Legal Institute (formerly American Tradition Institute). Accessed April 2014.

  3. David W. Schnare. “Climate Change and the Uncomfortable Middle Ground: The Geoengineering and 'No Regrets' Policy Alternative” (PDF), The Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy.

  4. U.S. Senate Report: Over 400 Prominent Scientists Disputed Man-Made Global Warming Claims in 2007,” U.S. Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works, December 20, 2007.

  5. David Schnare. “Emergency Preparedness for Climate Change” (.doc) The Jefferson Journal, March 16, 2008.

  6. David Schnare. “Four Truths about Climate Change,” The Jefferson Journal (.doc), November 3, 2008.

  7. “Responses to Climate Change and their Implications on Preservation and Restoration of the Chesapeake Bay” (PDF), David Schnare's testimony before the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, September 26, 2007.

  8. David Schnare. “What Real Scientists Do: Global Warming Science vs. Global Whining Scientists,” MasterResource, March 16, 2010.

  9. David Schnare. “Climate Science Policy Needs a 'Team B',” MasterResource. May 18, 2010.

  10. David Schnare. “A Tea Party Environmental Platform,” Bacon's Rebellion, May 12, 2010. Archived May 20, 2011.

  11. David Schnare. “Death by Wind,” Jefferson Policy Journal, February 17, 2011.

  12. Speakers,” International Conference on Climate Change (climateconference.heartland.org). Accessed February, 2012.

  13. “Virginia Climate Change & Energy Business Summit” (PDF), Yourenergyfuture.org.

  14. “Annual Report 2008” (PDF), Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy.

  15. Heartland Experts: David Schnare,” The Heartland Institute. Accessed February, 2012.

  16. Happy Earth Day: Dispelling Environmental Myths and Celebrating Human Achievement,” The Heritage Foundation, April 22, 2014. Archived April 30, 2014.