Climate change summit in Austin addresses energy woes

Flood water on Citation Avenue (Henry Mojica)
Flood water on Citation Avenue (Henry Mojica)

TEXAS (KXAN) — Central Texas has seen extreme weather this year. From the Hidden Pines Wildfire in Bastrop last month to, just weeks later, back-to-back rounds of heavy rain causing devastating flooding in parts of Austin surrounding counties.

Researchers say that extremes on both ends of the spectrum like this–longer dry periods, and heavier occasional rain–will become more common as the climate changes.

Robert Henneke is the Director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank based in Austin.

aerial photograph showing general area of origin taken within approx one hour of fire starting (Courtesy: Bastrop Co. Commissioner Beckett)
Aerial photograph showing general area of origin taken within approximately one hour of the Hidden Pines fire starting (Courtesy: TFS Report)

Henneke’s organization is hosting an energy and climate policy summit called “At the Crossroads” today and tomorrow, bringing together a group of “thought leaders” for a discussion on energy and climate.

It has been well-documented that CO2 levels across the planet are rising. Scientists say this greenhouse gas acts like a blanket, making temperatures rise. However, speakers at this climate conference disagree.

Henneke said 97% of climate scientists agree that climate change is not only happening, but that human activity such as burning fossil fuels is chiefly responsible.

The conference, happening today and tomorrow, is sold out. You can watch the live stream here. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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