- B.S. in Mathematics and Geography.
- M.S. degree in Geography-Climatology
- Ph.D. in Climatology, University of Delaware.
Legates was later asked to step down as State Climatologist by the Dean of the University. Although no one at the university was willing to explain the reason for replacing Legates as the State Climatologist, Greenpeace speculates that the reason may have been Legates's close ties with Willie Soon. 
In 2007, then-governor Ruth Ann Minner asked Legates to stop using his formal title in public statements on climate change policy. Minner wrote:
“Your views on climate change, as I understand them, are not aligned with those of my administration. In light of my position and due to the confusion surrounding your role with the state, I am directing you to offer any future statements on this or other public policy matters only on behalf of yourself or the University of Delaware, and not as state climatologist.” 
Legates and Soon have authored numerous papers together, including a controversial 2007 “polar bear study” that was partially funded by Koch Industries. Legates was the co-author on four of the 11 papers that Soon received fossil fuel funding for – and failed to disclose in the paper. , 
Legates maintains affiliations with numerous conservative think tanks that oppose climate change regulation or are skeptical of man-made global warming, including the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) where he has been an “Adjunct Scholar” and “Environmental Expert.” , 
Stance on Climate Change
Legates is a signatory of the Oregon Petition, which states that “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”
“Climate, however, is not static. It is highly variable, on timescales from years to millennia – for reasons that include, but certainly are not limited to, human activity.” 
“Overall, it appears that anthropogenic climate change estimates are still uncertain (given the discrepancies between most models) and scenarios derived from still incomplete GCMs should not be used to assess future climate change or make national assessments.” 
December 8, 2016
“Models have too much sensitivity to climate change, particular with relation to the greenhouse effect, because there’s just too much water in the atmosphere.” 
“Students are increasingly being fed climate change advocacy as a surrogate for becoming climate science literate. This makes them easy targets for the climate alarmism that pervades America today.” 
“I fear that our climate science curriculum has been co-opted, to satisfy the climate change fear-mongering agenda that pervades our society today. Instead of teaching the science behind Earth’s climate, advocates have taken the initiative to convert it to a social agenda of environmental activism.” 
Legates concludes at the Heartland Institute's Tenth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC10) that it is “difficult to continue to argue that the climate, of the US at least, is becoming more extreme.” 
Regarding the IPCC: “I am not a reviewer, because reviewing the IPCC allows them to put your name on the list, and then you become one of the 'major scientists,' twenty-five hundred or so, that are supposedly 'all in agreement.' I do know that there was a lot of concern, but not much of that made it into the final document.” 
“The IPCC really is a sham because while it gives the impression of being a consensus of scientists, it is simply a political document prepared by advocacy scientists with a large ax to grind.”
December 8, 2016
David Legates was a speaker at the “At the Crossroads III Energy and Climate Summit,” an event co-hosted by the Heritage Foundation and the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF). The event was billed as “the premier energy-and-climate policy event in America,” and attracted a range of prominent climate change deniers as well as a range of names connected to Donald Trump and his transition team. 
Legates was intended to be on a panel debate, however according to him no one showed up to debate the other side. Legates joked: “I'd like to say that when they saw it was me, they went slinking bank into the swamp from which they came. But the truth is, had any one of these people or had any one of you been in the same situation, they would have not have come here either.” Video and choice quotes below.
“As far as I’m concerned, carbon dioxide is not the most important compound on the planet, as far as climate is concerned. It is of course, as Pat alluded, water.” [31:18]
“When you look at water vapor and water in the atmosphere […] it’s everywhere, in all three forms. […] You can see, even atmospheric concentration, which is where carbon dioxide is king, it’s apparently only queen because water vapor has even the bigger impact on atmospheric concentration than carbon dioxide does.“ [32:56]
“I could have been a modeler. Maybe in another world, I am. I don’t know.” [36:35]
Legates argues that models are just too complex: “There’s 40 different kinds of vegetation around the plant. Now, this shows you just how complex these models are. But what I want to point out is how ridiculous this gets […] we’ve got an unbelievable number of variables to try to keep track of, and then we hit it with a little teeny mallet to see what happens and we bet the farm and all the policy of the future on what that model does with that little, teeny nudge, given the fact it's got all of these fundamental problems associated with them.” [37:28]
“Models have too much sensitivity to climate change, particular with relation to the greenhouse effect, because there’s just too much water in the atmosphere.” [38:45]
Doug Domenech, director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation's “Fueling Freedom” project, wrote about the proceedings at The Hill. Domenech outlined the common climate change denial message shared among the speakers: “Is climate change real? Yes, it has happened in the past and will happen in the future. Is man making an impact on the climate? Perhaps but in very small ways. But the overarching consensus remains the climate change we are experiencing is by no means catastrophic.” 
- Brooke Rollins
- Becky Norton Dunlop
- Mike Lee
- Lamar Smith
- Pete Olson
- Gary Palmer
- James Inhofe
- Kathleen Hartnett White
- Stephen Moore
- Bud Brigham
- David Kreutzer
- Patrick J. Michaels
- Mark P. Mills
- Horace Cooper
- Patrick Forkin
- Allen Gilmer
- Dan Byers
- Nicolas Loris
- Richard Lindzen
- Willie Soon
- Andrew M. Grossman
- William Happer
- Craig Idso
- Roy Spencer
- Patrick J. Michaels
- Brooke Rollins
- Becky Norton Dunlop
- David Legates
- James Taylor
July 8 - 10, 2016
David Legates was a speaker at 34th Annual Meeting of Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, co-sponsored by Access to Energy, the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, and Physicians for Civil Defense. 
Legates's talk was titled “Freedom of Information Act and Academic Freedom in Climate Science.” 
DDP listed the following speakers at their event: 
- Jane Orient
- Willie Soon
- David Legates
- Mohan Doss
- Arthur Levy
- Geoffrey L. Shapiro
- Steven Hatfill
- S. Fred Singer
- Ken Haapala
- Tony Heller (AKA Steven Goddard)
- Patrick Frank
- Joe Leimkuhler
- Donald W. Miller
- Howard Hayden
- Yuri Maltsev
- Stephen Jones
- Matthew Robinson
- Arthur Robinson
March 31, 2016
Climate Hustle was produced by the Committee for Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) and CDR Communications. As noted at Desmog's project, ClimateHustler.org, CFACT has received funding from ExxonMobil, Chevron, as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars from foundations associated with Richard Mellon Scaife. CFACT has also received at least $7.8 million in “dark money” through DonorsTrust and Donors Capital Fund. , 
CDR Communications was behind the 2010 video by the Cornwall Alliance titled Resisting the Green Dragon, which claimed environmentalism was a “false religion” and a “global government” power grab. Chris Rogers of CDR Communictions is also chairman of The James Partnership, the umbrella arm that includes the Cornwall Alliance as one of its projects and pays the salary of Calvin Beisner, Cornwall’s founder and spokesperson. 
- Robert Giegengack
- Judith Curry
- Richard Tol
- Caleb Rossiter
- Ivar Giaever
- Roy Spencer
- Daniel B. Botkin
- Patrick Moore
- Don J. Easterbrook
- Robert M. Carter
- John Theon
- Dennis Rancourt
- William M. Briggs
- Roger Pielke Sr.
- Walter Cunningham
- Patrick J. Michaels
- Lord Christopher Monckton
- Anthony Watts
- Leighton Steward
- Philip Stott
- Will Happer
June 11-12, 2015
David Legates was a speaker on Panel 1: “Climate Science,” at the Heartland Institute’s Tenth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC10) in Washington, D.C., with Willie Soon and Patrick Michaels. 
View David Legates’ Panel 1 presentation at the Heartland Institute’s ICCC10, below: 
May 12, 2015
David Legates is a signatory to an open letter to Pope Francis on climate change. The letter invites the Pope to reconsider his views on climate change before his upcoming encyclical letter on the environment, which is widely expected to call for measures to prevent climate change in the interests of the world’s poor. 
The open letter was coordinated and signed by Calvin Beisner of the Cornwall Alliance. According to the letter, “Good climate policy must recognize human exceptionalism, the God-given call for human persons to 'have dominion' in the natural world (Genesis 1:28), and the need to protect the poor from harm, including actions that hinder their ascent out of poverty.” 
Another excerpt below:
”[…] the [climate] models are wrong. They therefore provide no rational basis to forecast dangerous human-induced global warming, and therefore no rational basis for efforts to reduce warming by restricting the use of fossil fuels or any other means.”
Judith Curry comments on her blog Climate Etc. that “Arguably the most effective 'pushback' [to the encyclical letter] comes from Cal Beisner of the Cornwall Alliance, who coordinated An Open Letter to Pope Francis on Climate Change.” 
David Legates co-authored a report, that has been cited in the media to claim that the 97% consensus is “bogus.” According to The Daily Signal, Legates, Willie Soon, William Briggs, and Christopher Monckton “found that a mere 1 percent of the 4,014 papers expressing an opinion on climate change claim that the majority of warming since 1950 is man-made.” , 
David Legates is a co-author, along with Willie Soon, William M. Briggs, and Christopher Monckton, of a paper in Science Bulletin titled “Why models run hot: results from an irreducibly simple climate model” (PDF). 
The paper concludes that “it appears that the impact of anthropogenic global warming over the next century, and even as far as equilibrium many millennia hence, may be no more than one-third to one-half of IPCC’s current projections.”
In June 2014, Legates testified at the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee about droughts and agriculture, stating: “My overall conclusion is that droughts in the United States are more frequent and more intense during colder periods. Thus, the historical record does not warrant a claim that global warming is likely to negatively impact agricultural activities.” 
In March 2013, Legates appeared on the same stage as Willie Soon at a Georgetown, Delaware debate on global warming. Legates told the audience, “There is no clear signal of sea-level rise in Delaware.” 
David Legates was a speaker at the Heartland Institute's 2009 International Conference on Climate Change. The conference is described as “a platform for scientists and policy analysts from around the world who question the theory that global warming is a crisis.” 
The conference's sponsors have received over $40 million from oil companies and right-wing foundations such as Koch Foundations and Scaife Foundations. One of the main purposes of the conference was to cast doubt on the findings of the most recent Assessment Report by the Independent Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report.
David Legates signed an open letter to the EPA opposing the endangerment finding for greenhouse gases. According to the letter, submitted to EPA administrator Lisa P. Jackson, “there is no known credible reason why further increasing CO2 levels will cause harm in the future.” 
Appeared in a video titled “Unstoppable Solar Cycles: The Real Story of Greenland” alongside prominent skeptic Willie Soon. The video, produced by the Idea Channel and funded by the Heartland Institute, contends that solar cycles are the sole driver behind climate change.
The Heartland Institute distributed over 11,000 brochures and DVDs to Canadian Schools, with their goal being for students to receive a “'balanced' education about an 'important and controversial issue'.” 
Rie Oldenburg, curator of the Narsaq Museum in Southern Greenland, says she was told that she was contributing to a video on Norse history. But she was horrified to learn that the interview was used to contribute to a DVD that denies the human contribution to climate change.
March 30, 2008
Legates was reportedly ordered by the Governor of Delaware to stop using the title of “State Climatologist” when making statements about global warming. Legates used the “State Climatologist” tag when he co-wrote a friend-of-the-court legal brief opposing an attempt by Delaware and other states to force the federal regulation of greenhouse gases. The brief was filed by the Competitive Enterprise Institute. 
In response to the use of the title “State Climatologist,” Delaware Governor Ruth Ann Minner (D) wrote to Legates:
“Your views on climate change, as I understand them, are not aligned with those of my administration. In light of my position and due to the confusion surrounding your role with the state, I am directing you to offer any future statements on this or other public policy matters only on behalf of yourself or the University of Delaware, and not as state climatologist.”
February 24, 2016
David Legates's work is featured in Shattered Consensus, a book comprised of “nine expert essays on global warming,” describes the George C. Marshall Institute. Legates was one of the four authors who discussed their chapters at a Marshall Institute event.  In addition to Legates, authors included Ross McKitrick, Patrick Michaels, and Oliver W. Frauenfeld. Slides from Legate's presentation can be viewed here (PDF). 
Legates was a speaker at an event celebrating the release of a paper by the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance (ISA) titled “A Call to Truth, Prudence and the Protection of the Poor: An Evangelical Response to Global Warming.” Authors of the paper include prominent climate change skeptics including Calvin Beisner, Paul K. Driessen, Ross McKitrick and Roy W. Spencer. 
“A Call to Truth” refutes, on a point-by-point basis, an open letter by another Evangelical organization titled “Climate Change: An Evangelical Call to Action” which supports the existence of man-made climate change. , 
The ISA paper contends that “All of these assumptions [by 'An Evangelical Call to Action'] … are false, probably false, or exaggerated.”
According to their website, the ISA is “a coalition of religious leaders, clergy, theologians, scientists, academics, and other policy experts committed to bringing a proper and balanced Biblical view of stewardship to the critical issues of environment and development.” The group was renamed in 2007 as the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation.
Legates was a “review editor” at the journal “Climate Research” when the controversial Soon/Baliunas paper attacking Michael Mann’s Hockey Stick was published. He went on to co-author an update to the paper, publishing in discredited journal Energy and Environment with Soon, Baliunas, and both Craig and Sherwood Idso.
According to Legates' testimony to the Senate Environment and Public Works committee in July 2003: 
“I will say with respect to Climate Research, Otto Kinne, who is director of Inter-Research, the parent organization of Climate Research, asked Chris de Freitas who was the editor who served on the Soon and Baliunus papers, and I can relay this because I am a review editor of Climate Research so I am familiar with what has been taking place.”
- George C. Marshall Institute — “Expert.” 
- Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI) — Listed as “personnel” since 2012. 
- National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) — “Adjunct Scholar” and “Environmental Expert.” , 
- Independent Institute — “Research Fellow.” 
- Heartland Institute — “Expert.” 
- Natural Resources Stewardship Project (NRSP) —Past “Allied Expert.” 
- Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI)— “Adjunct Scholar*” and contributor.
*ExxonSecrets and other sources have listed Legates as an “Adjunct Scholar” with the CEI, but this information has been since removed from the CEI website. Legates is listed among CEI's “alumni, and CEI currently maintains a blank contributor page for a “David Legates.” , 
- The George C. Marshall Institute (now the CO2 Coalition) has received over $865,000 in funding from oil-giant ExxonMobil. , 
- The National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) has received over $615,900 from oil giant ExxonMobil. 
The NCPA also has a history with tobacco company Philip Morris. For example, in a 1998 Philip Morris document titled “third-party public policy activity,” the NCPA is listed as an anti-government regulations group that “will write op-eds.” 
- The Independent Institute has received $85,000 in grants from ExxonMobil as well as grants from Philip Morris. The David H. Koch Charitable Foundation, a charitable branch of the oil-services giant Koch Industries, also contributed $160,000 between 1995 and 2001. , , 
- The Heartland Institute has received over $676,500 from oil-giant ExxonMobil since 1998. 
- The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) has received $2,005,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998. They have also received signification funds from the American Petroleum Institute as well as from the oil-service giant Koch Industry's family foundations. 
The CEI receives some of the highest levels of corporate funding of any conservative think-tank, and ExxonSecrets reports them to be “at the center of the global warming misinformation campaign.”
- “Polar bears of western Hudson Bay and climate change: Are warming spring air temperatures the ‘ultimate’ survival control factor?” Ecological Complexity 4 (2007) 73–84. M.G. Dyck, W. Soon, R.K. Baydack, D.R. Legates, S. Baliunas, T.F. Ball, L.O. Hancock.
- “New Perspectives on Climate Change: What the EPA Isn't Telling Us.” The Independent Institute. July 28, 2003. S. Fred Singer, John R. Christy, Robert E. Davis, David R. Legates, Wendy M. Novicoff.
“New Perspectives on Climate Change” (PDF) indicts the IPCC, describing any research done by them as “misleading, inaccurate, unreliable, or simply wrong.” The Independent Institute's report summary describes Legates as a “internationally recognized…authority on climate change.”
- Washington Roundtable on Science & Public Policy: “Global Warming and the Hydrologic Cycle: How are the Occurrence of Floods, Droughts, and Storms Likely to Change?” (PDF) April 14, 2004. George C. Marshall Institute.
“David R. Legates.” Profile at the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA). Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/v0qzg
Washington Roundtable on Science and Public Policy Climate Forecasts, Global Warming and the National Assessment” (PDF). January 23, 2001. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Canadian schools sent brochures, DVDs from climate change skeptics,” Canwest News Service, May 4, 2008. Archived October 8, 2015. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/wSQje
“Delaware climatologist asked to stop using title in official capacity,” Greenwire, February 22, 2007. Republished by the Heat is Online. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/rmObp
“Call to Truth, Prudence and the Protection of the Poor: An Evangelical Response to Global Warming,” The Heritage Foundation, July 25, 2006. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/Ar2di
“Climatologist Exposes Cracks In Global Warming Foundation,” National Center for Policy Analysis, July 12, 2004. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/JYs7a
“Panel 1: Climate Science with Willie Soon, Ph.D., David Legates, Ph.D., and Patrick Michaels, Ph.D.,” UStream video. Archived video on file at DeSmog.
“Why models run hot: results from an irreducibly simple climate model” (PDF), Sci. Bull. (2015) 60(1):122–135. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
Ben Jervey. “David Legates Asked To Step Down As Delaware State Climatologist,” DeSmog, July 14, 2011.
Brendan DeMelle. “Koch Industries' Extensive Funding of Climate Denial Industry Unmasked,” DeSmog, March 29, 2010.
Lisa Song. “A Guide To Willie Soon's Climate Research Funded by Fossil Fuel Companies,” InsideClimate News, February 23, 2015. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/2fXjv
“Precipitation and the Precipitation and the 'Enhanced' Hydrologic Cycle” (PDF), Marshall Institute. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Shattered Consensus: Four Authors Discuss Their New Book on Climate Science,” George C. Marshall Institute, February 24, 2006. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/HcIlO
“David Legates, Courage in Defense of Science Award, ICCC10,” YouTube video uploaded by user The Heartland Institute, July 2, 2015. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
“Climate Consensus and ‘Misinformation’: A Rejoinder to Agnotology, Scientific Consensus, and the Teaching and Learning of Climate Change,” Science & Education, April 2015, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 299–318. Retrieved from SpringerLink. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/oHqcJ
Nicolas Loris. “Debunking Leonardo DiCaprio’s Climate Change Documentary,” The Daily Signal, November 10, 2016. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/6ee4B
“Background on Climate Hustle Host and Producers,” ClimateHustle.org. Archived .pdf on file at Desmog.
Graham Readfearn. “The Evangelical Christian Climate Deniers Behind Marc Morano’s Climate Hustle Documentary,” Desmog, November 19, 2015.
Marc Morano. “'Climate Hustle' goes to DC: Skeptical film to premiere on Capitol Hill; Panel with Gov. Sarah Palin, Brent Bozell & Appearance by Warmist Bill Nye,” Climate Depot, March 31, 2016. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/n2q7P
“Many leading scientists tell the EPA to think again by The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley,” Climate Realists, February 28, 2010. Archived November 25, 2016 Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/Bc0Nc
Jeff Montgomery. “Climate change skeptics say 'sick' science distorts facts,” The News Journal, March 19, 2013. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/s0cvh
Jeff Montgomery. “UD's David Legates caught in climate change controversy,” The News Journal, February 27, 2015. Archived November 25, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/3WyLx
“David Legates, ICCC2,” International Conferences on Climate Change. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
“An Open Letter to the Signers of 'Climate Change: An Evangelical Call to Action' and Others Concerned About Global Warming” (PDF), Cornwall Alliance, April 15, 2009. Archivd .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Willie Soon email to climate deniers IPCC 4th Assessment Attack,” Greenpeace USA. Archived October 23, 2014. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/Nx0y5
Gayathri Vaidyanathan. “ADVOCACY:Think tank that cast doubt on climate change science morphs into smaller one,” ClimateWire, December 10, 2015. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/fTPko
“FACTSHEET: NATIONAL CENTER FOR POLICY ANALYSIS, NCPA,” ExxonSecrets. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/XWRcV
“Re: Third-party Public Policy Activity,” Philip Morris Records, April, 1998.. Retrieved from Truth Tobacco Industry Documents. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Dear Derek,” The Independent Institute, January 6, 1995. Retreived from the Truth Tobacco Industry Documents library. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“CLIMATE HISTORY AND THE SCIENCE UNDERLYING FATE, TRANSPORT, AND HEALTH EFFECTS OF MERCURY EMISSIONS” (PDF), July 29, 2003. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“At the Crossroads III: Energy and Climate Policy Summit,” Heritage Foundation, December 8, 2016. Archived December 22, 2016. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/AKaKq
“Part 5 - At the Crossroads III: Energy and Climate Policy Summit,” YouTube video uploaded by user The Heritage Foundation, December 9, 2016. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.