The Heartland Institute’s International Climate Change Conference commenced in Chicago last night, bringing together some of the world’s leading climatologists who offer dissenting views from the mainstream “global warming is a serious, human-induced problem” view. This year 73 scientists, economists, and policy analysts from 23 countries will present to over 700 attendees.

Heartland’s conference provides a valuable forum for accomplished scientists to showcase their work and offer different reasons as to why the planet is warming and cooling and how fast it is doing so. Several of the panels will bring together analysts, including Heritage’s Ben Lieberman, to look at the policy implications behind global warming legislation.

In a sense, Heartland’s conference (this being the fourth annual) was Climategate before Climategate. Before leaked emails and other documents from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia brought climate change skepticism to the headlines of papers, Heartland’s conference showed their was another side to the story. The purpose of the conference is not necessarily to expose flaws in the climate research used by our politicians to justify carbon dioxide regulations as Climategate did – although some panels have done so in the past – rather provide an opportunity for debate on climate science.

It was fitting that Sunday night’s keynote speaker was climate expert Stephen McIntyre, a leader in exposing the data mismanagement in Climategate, most notably Michael Mann’s hockey stick theory. He is author of the blog Climate Audit and his presentation focused on the “Nature trick” to “hide the decline.” This was the most notorious of the leaked emails where Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author Mann “chopped off the inconvenient portion of the tree ring data – the portion where it goes down – and tucked the end point under other data, giving a rhetorical impression of consistency.”

Defenders of the leaked emails said the language was common practice but McIntyre’s talk reveals otherwise. McIntyre spent two years and $5,000 of his own money to uncover much of this information and his full presentation goes into much more detail. You can find it at, and for those who couldn’t attend, PajamasTV is covering the entire event.

You can watch McIntyre’s speech from last year above.