CBS News Ties Extreme Weather To Manmade Climate Change

CBS News had a terrific panel discussing the climate change link to the extreme weather slamming the country on Face the Nation Sunday.

Watch the key issues discussed by Climate Central’s Chief Climatologist Heidi Cullen, WFOR’s Chief Meteorologist David Bernard, TIME‘s Jeffrey Kluger and American Meteorological Society President Marshall Shepherd:

It’s good to see experts who distinguish between the extreme weather events that we know global warming is already making worse — such as droughts, heat waves, and superstorms — and the cases where the link is more tenuous, such as tornadoes (see “Tornadoes, Extreme Weather And Climate Change, Revisited“).

And unlike many panels of experts who ignore the central cause of recent climate change, Kluger stated clearly, “We’re getting a level of consensus on thousands of peer reviewed studies over decades that have established the human contribution to climate change.”

Finally, Cullen made clear we must act now to reduce carbon pollution because “the longer you wait to fix it the tougher it gets to fix, so the sooner we start the better off we are.”

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45 Responses to CBS News Ties Extreme Weather To Manmade Climate Change

  1. Ernest says:

    Excellent communications by the panel. I’m gratified.

  2. fj says:

    In this report, there is not indication the extreme danger of the accelerating climate change crisis and the overwhelming need for immediate action at wartime speed on the largest possible scale.

  3. fj says:

    No mention of major changes in flood insurance in response.

  4. BobbyL says:

    This seems to contradict the hypothesis often put forth in the comments on this site that the mainstream media are totally controlled by elite corporate rulers whose goal it is keep the facts about climate change hidden from the public.

  5. Superman1 says:

    This is progress: a panel linking extreme weather to manmade climate change? At a time when we should be passing and enforcing mandates to eliminate every non-essential use of fossil fuel, and many other parallel draconian measures, we think a panel DISCUSSING the topic represents progress?? MacBeth had it right: Full of Sound and Fury; Signifying Nothing!

  6. fj says:

    There’s a terriffic crisis din for a major mainstream Paul Revere moment sounding the alarm which is just not happening.

  7. fj says:

    Not really.

    Just a lot of polite rambling almost collegial chatter with no sense of serious danger, crisis, urgency . . .

    And, lots of smiley faces.

  8. BillD says:

    nice panel. The host kept asking about the cause–why is this happening and will it get worse? I’m not sure whether he was waiting and expected the hemming and hawing that we usually see from at least one panelist, whether he did not know the answer or whether he really wanted to hear the clear statements provided by the panelists.

  9. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Don’t burst Bobby’s bubble. He’s a True Believer in the Free Press, God bless ‘im!

  10. fj says:

    Exactly, he had to say something to force the issue like let’s cut to chase . . .

  11. fj says:

    Reality-based mainstream reporting of the crisis should be in tone reminiscent of Pearl Harbor, 9/11, Hindenberg diasaster . . .

  12. Superman1 says:

    And now that these media gatekeepers have let the truth slip out, how many viewers drastically reduced their fossil fuel use? Maybe we need a poll!

  13. Dave S. Nottear says:

    The military and the insurance industry were way ahead of the media on both climate change and peak oil production.

  14. Dave S. Nottear says:

    Don’t get too excited until this becomes the norm, rather than the rare exception, for the media in general.

    Don’t be surprised if CBS goes all New-York-Times on us by going back to their “regularly scheduled programming” of “fair and balanced coverage.”

  15. Dave S. Nottear says:

    They should at least cover it like a War – consistently and seriously.

    In place of daily body counts, they could report on the Largest CO2 Emitters, ice extent and volume, etc.

    (it’s nice to have pleasant fantasies like this once in a while ;)

  16. BobbyL says:

    The facts speak for themselves.

  17. Superman1 says:

    If this is a War, who is the enemy?

  18. Merrelyn Emery says:

    You are watching social change in action. In my line of business, this event is called an embryo of social change. Not all embryos grow up to be powerful social movements as some are spontaneously or deliberately aborted. The fate of this one will be known in the near future, ME

  19. fj says:

    The crisis is so extreme that action must extremely aggressive life-and-death war-like to undo the extreme damage we have done to our environment and ultimately ourselves.

    The enemies are our “Inner Demons”
    (Steven Pinker, “The Better Angels of Our Nature”)


  20. fj says:

    World War III will be fought with sonnets for humanity and its planetary home.

  21. prokaryotes says:

    At one point there is no more an excuse for the “public” to consume gasoline.

    And this shows how far people are disconnected from reality.

  22. Dave S. Nottear says:

    From quote of the day:

    “None is more remembered than Pogo the ‘possum’s quote in the poster Kelly designed to help promote environmental awareness and publicize the first annual observance of Earth Day, held on April 22, 1970:


    The War is on our appetites. It is not a matter of living beyond our means.

    See for example: Nate Hagen’s:

    The Psychological and Evolutionary Roots of Resource Overconsumption Revisited

  23. BobbyL says:

    If there were actually corporate control of the mainstream media that is keeping the facts about climate change hidden to make profits from fossil fuels there is no way in the world that this segment gets on the air. No way.

  24. Superman1 says:

    “The fate of this one will be known in the near future”. Correction: the fate of this one has been obvious for decades!

  25. fj says:

    It seems that past climate changes have forced humanity to smarten up and prevail.

    Let’s hope this is no different except in extraordinary scale and that the hardship will be minimal if we act accordingly; the advance of humanity could also be extraordinary.

  26. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    They might be Pinker’s ‘inner demons’ or his acquaintances’, but they (apart from Ideology) are not mine. Humanity is being destroyed by the determined efforts of the worst amongst us, not by the species as a whole.

  27. fj says:

    Mulga, no not exactly. You should first understand what Pinker is proposing.

    On the quick, you may further think on the idea of Dominance.

  28. fj says:

    BobbyL, the pathology of power is complicated and most likely any system that is structurally violent has it.

  29. Dave S. Nottear says:

    fj, not to be argumentative but, what makes you say?:

    “It seems that past climate changes have forced humanity to smarten up and prevail.”

    “If we act accordingly….”

    It looks like “fractured fairy tales” dead ahead, to me, for the global village, and many nations.

    The competition for resources will be overwhelming, both from within and without, and it is likely there will be many “we”, too many “we” to count.

    And who belongs to which “we” will vary with time and conditions. So will morals and ethics vary with time and conditions.

    I wonder which if any “we” will be around 100 years from now to write the myth of this time period.

    Got Hope?
    (good night nurse)

  30. Superman1 says:

    Mulga, you’re off-base on this one. We are committing speciescide due to our addiction to the high energy intensity lifestyle enabled by the availability of ‘cheap’ fossil fuels. There may be enablers who exploit our weaknesses, but ‘we’ are the problem.

  31. Merrelyn Emery says:

    The event was the CBS honest discussion of climate change. The question is whether or not this will become a trend in the USA media. I recall mention of another one recently so it is possible, ME

  32. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Pinker is not aware of the genotypical design principles which have a major effect on our behaviour. You can forget the ‘demons’, ME

  33. fj says:

    Dave S. Nottear,

    RE: “It seems that past climate changes have forced humanity to smarten up and prevail.”

    In an effort to provide a simple accessible narrative this is a very general non-expert comment on a blog.

    For more serious stuff you may want to read:

    Environmental Hypotheses of Hominin Evolution

    Be my guest and do further search and evaluation of “climate change and archeology” on the Columbia University website and let me know what you think.

  34. fj says:

    Search the Columbia University and or Earth Institute website for “climate change and archeology”.

  35. fj says:

    ref: Dave S. Nottear,

  36. fj says:

    It could go either way with waves of failed states in the developing world, fortress America, fortess Europe, fortress Beijing . . . and terrorism galore across the globe — soylent green and dystopias of science fiction; cyber warfare already starting — but, it does not make sense that this will be allowed to happen; despite that humans have a history of not being terribly rational.

    We are getting very close to that and the current situation is one of horrific brinkmanship but, pardon my optimism; but, I believe too many “haves” are rational enough . . . realize and will realize that it is a very dangerous difficult immoral way to go; with the horrors of our own making continually accelerating . . . thoughts of which are too difficult to believe possible, and let happen.

  37. fj says:

    Minimal responses accepted.

  38. fj says:


    What Pinker does is use angels and demons religious metaphors for different patterns of observed behavior in an attempt to establish simple narratives for potential solutions in a most laudable effort to prevent violence.

    Please explain how “genotypical design principals” have anything to do with this.

  39. fj says:

    Environmental Hypotheses of Hominin Evolution

  40. fj says:


    “Environmental Hypothesis of Hominin Evolution”

    Recent stuff also available

  41. Merrelyn Emery says:

    fj, I know what Pinker does. The genotypical design principles underly different organizational structures which have a very large effect on behaviour. If you want to prevent violence you would redesign your structures from the first principle to the second. Works every time, ME

  42. fj says:


    Simply, the worst among us are too heavily informed by these demons.

  43. fj says:


    Please explain how your genotypical design principles underly different organizational structures, what organizations you are referring to, and how they have a very large effect on the behaviour of these organizations?

  44. fj says:


    And, the fact that it is necessary to parse what you are talking about may give indication that it is outside the level of scope of the simple functional narratives that Pinker is attempting to create and the posts and comments on this blog.