Home Environment & Climate News The Heartland Institute President Participates in Penn Political Union Debate – ‘The...

The Heartland Institute President Participates in Penn Political Union Debate – ‘The Future of Energy’

Below is a video from the University of Pennsylvania Political Union of a panel discussion and debate that President of The Heartland Institute, James Taylor, participated in last week regarding energy, environment, and climate.

From the Andrea Mitchell Center for the Study of Democracy:
4/21/2021 – AS THE U.S. AND THE WORLD GRAPPLE with the future of energy, they face a wide array of challenges and opportunities: growing populations, expanding consumer demand, deepening environmental and climate impacts; and, at the same time, new technologies both for generating cleaner energy and for more effectively extracting fossil fuels. Even as the Biden administration charts one path to the future, there are numerous alternatives. Join the Penn Political Union (PPU) as it welcomes five experts in energy policy for a panel discussion and debate:
  • JAMES TAYLOR (The Heartland Institute)
  • KELLY FLANIGAN (PennEnvironment)
  • MARK NELSON (Radiant Energy Fund)
  • TODD LARSEN (Green America)
THE PENN POLITICAL UNION (PPU) is an undergraduate organization formed in 2014 that features parliamentary-style deliberation on urgent contemporary issues. To represent a wide spectrum of political opinion, students affiliate with five member political parties: Libertarian, Conservative, Centrist, Liberal, and Progressive. The goal of PPU, in both debates and less formal discussions, is to fully represent political diversity while maintaining civility and openness to other outlooks.

Watch the video:

The Heartland Institute greatly appreciates the opportunity afforded by the University of Pennsylvania Political Union to participate in this discussion. For more information about obtaining a speaker from our stable of experts on climate, energy, and environment, please contact us via our website at Heartland.org

Anthony Wattshttps://wattsupwiththat.com/
Anthony Watts is a senior fellow for environment and climate at The Heartland Institute. Watts has been in the weather business both in front of, and behind the camera as an on-air television meteorologist since 1978, and currently does daily radio forecasts.


  1. James did a great job of explaining why intermittents cannot and shouldn’t be part of the power generation mix (except in very parochial applications) but was stymied by a “he said she said” disagreement regarding the empirical evidence. Unfortunately the unreliable energy proponents referred the listeners to peer reviewed papers that in summary support their agenda, and we know that the average undergrad cannot differentiate between RCP8.5 model output and reality, and will find in favor of CAGW. The nuclear fella did a great job of debunking much of their nonsense and used the modern vernacular to do so, but couldn’t buy in to the “why do nuclear now when fossil fuel will do just fine?”. I do think nuclear has a fantastic future but it is associated with fossil fuel availability and associated high prices (ie. 100+ years from now). The short time discussing CO2 and its poor correlation with temperature (which is kinda crazy considering it’s the raison d’etre for intermittents) was too short, but would also require the whole segment. Scary how these young folk know the talking points but do not become acquainted with the other side’s arguments so they can argue effectively. Almost surprised that the discussion didn’t descend in to shouting and name calling, as that was the only place they could go. Thanks James for your patience with these folk and your well crafted arguments that went over the head of 90% of the listeners.


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