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America First Energy Conference

The Heartland Institute’s America First Energy Conference took place on August 7, 2018 at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside hotel. It outlined the advances for Energy Freedom we’ve seen come about under President Trump, and looked forward to the advances we’ll see in the years to come. The president’s agenda marks a decisive change in direction from the Obama administration’s “war on fossil fuels” and focus on the theory of catastrophic man-caused climate change.

The conference featured 43 speakers from government, industry, academia, and other think tanks speaking on 10 panels and three plenary keynote sessions.

Video of every keynote and panel presentation is below. Download a PDF of the conference program here.


Keynotes


Panels

PANEL 1A. THE FUTURE OF COAL, OIL, AND NATURAL GAS
President Donald Trump has unleashed an Energy Freedom agenda for America with the aim of making the United States the world’s leading energy power. There is a lot of positive news on that front, and these speakers will talk about the bright times ahead for the future of coal, petroleum, and natural gas.


PANEL 1B. CARBON TAXES, CAP & TRADE, AND OTHER BAD IDEAS
Carbon taxes and “cap and trade” schemes, are NOT market-based conservative ideas. They are distortions of the market — a ruse embraced by the environmental left to enact command-and-control policies over our use of energy and the economy as a whole.


PANEL 2A. FUELING FREEDOM AND PROSPERITY
America’s freedom and prosperity are literally fueled by this country’s abundant and affordable fossil fuels — coal, petroleum, and natural gas. We’re finally going after it in ways that will fire the engine of America’s economy and still protect the environment.


PANEL 2B. FIDUCIARY MALPRACTICE: THE ‘SUSTAINABLE’ INVESTMENT MOVEMENT
Environmental activists are gaining voting power to convince corporations and universities to divest from fossil fuel companies “to save the planet.” Not only is that not scientifically necessary, publicly traded companies and organizations that divest do a grave disservice to public pensions, ordinary investors, and the American economy. You want a worthy #resistance? Resist this.


PANEL 3. WHY CO2 EMISSIONS ARE NOT CREATING A CLIMATE CRISIS
Burning fossil fuels lifted humanity out of squalor and created modern society. It also adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, which is now more than 400 parts per million. But is human-generated CO2 causing a catastrophic climate crisis requiring wholesale conversion of the world’s energy systems? Short answer: No, as three scientists will explain.


PANEL 4A. REINING IN THE REGULATORS
The Regulations from the Executive In Need of Scrutiny Act (REINS Act) requires legislative approval of regulations that cost the private sector more than a set amount. A federal version sets the bar at $100 million. This is an essential effort that will finally put unaccountable federal and state regulators back in their place. This panel will address the challenges over-regulation poses for American prosperity.


PANEL 4B. CAFE STANDARDS: WHY THEY NEED TO GO
Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards are a relic of the Carter years. Obama put them on steroids as he left office. Trump is rolling them back. CAFE standards make vehicles less safe, and they are not necessary in an oil-rich America where consumers can decide to trade safety or power for fuel efficiency.


PANEL 5A. CLIMATE LAWSUITS AGAINST ENERGY COMPANIES AND THE GOVERNMENT
Environmental activists are losing the public debate, so (naturally) they run to the courts to get judges to enact their radical agenda. From the “climate trial” in San Francisco, to the case to preserve the planet on behalf of “the children,” the litigation seems endless. What’s the status of these cases? And will they succeed?


PANEL 5B. BATTLING RUSSIA AND AMERICA’S BIG GREEN MACHINE
You want to see real Russian Collusion? The Russians have funneled millions to groups in the West to oppose energy exploration, especially fracking. This panel will expose that woefully underreported story, and also the influence of billionaire radicals like Tom Steyer and Michael Bloomberg.


PANEL 6. REFORMING EPA: LOTS OF PROGRESS, MORE TO DO
Three members of President Trump’s Transition Team for the Environmental Protection Agency evaluate the reform victories so far, and look ahead at what else needs to be done to reverse the overreach of the Obama administration. This is a moderated plenary discussion.

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