Most television news outlets have given minimal airtime to the connection between global warming and Hurricane Sandy. In Fox’s case, it mentioned global warming in its Sandy coverage in order to mock climate science.
Fox News turned to climate denier Joe Bastardi at least twice in the last two days, where Bastardi presented debunked arguments that unprecedented extreme weather “has nothing to do with global warming” and “everything to do with nature.”
Bastardi appeared on Sean Hannity on Monday (he was also on Fox and Friends, Tuesday):
BASTARDI: When you see CO2 continue to go up and the global temperature goes up, levels off, and you can associate it with the natural cyclical pattern of the oceans and you look at the big picture. And also a lot of these people are just weather voyeurs. What if you’ve been studying since the day you were born? Some of them just study it now.
In fact, the world continues to warm. September marked the 331st month in a row that global temperatures were above the 20th century average. And scientists are increasingly making a direct connection between global warming and the probability and intensity of extreme weather events.
Although scientists reject Bastardi’s claims as “utter nonsense,” “simply ignorant” and “completely wrong,” Fox has often relied on the weather forecaster for climate denier arguments.
While Fox mocks climate scientists, other outlets have ignored climate change altogether, despite its relevant to Sandy’s destruction. (Some outlets did break the silence last night — more on that later this morning). Like a baseball player on steroids, the effects of human-caused climate change fuels the probability for more frequent extreme weather, such as superstorms.