From Watts Up With That?
Essay by Kip Hansen — 25 August 2023
I get emails and comments from readers wondering how it is that their local/national newspaper or television news outlet can get even the very basics about climate and climate change so totally wrong. These people ask “How can they get away with such outright lies?” and “Where do they get this nonsense?”
I’m going to tell you: It is through the intentional efforts of climate news cabals providing them with propaganda talking points and even complete stories. I know that that sounds like a “conspiracy theory”… but it is not a conspiracy theory if it is true and if those involved in the act of conspiring together not only do so openly but proudly publicize their actions.
The lesson today comes from an email I received from Covering Climate Now which characterizes itself this way: “CCNow collaborates with journalists and newsrooms to produce more informed and urgent climate stories, to make climate a part of every beat in the newsroom — from politics and weather to business and culture” and when they say “urgent” climate stories, they mean the more alarming and frightening, the better.
Who are the participants?
“Co-founded by the Columbia Journalism Review and The Nation in association with The Guardian and WNYC in 2019, CCNow’s 460-plus partners include some of the biggest names in news, and some of the smallest, because this story needs everyone. In addition to three of the world’s biggest news agencies — Reuters, Bloomberg, and Agence France Presse [AFP] — each of which provides content to thousands of other newsrooms, our partners include CBS News, NBC and MSNBC News, Noticias Telemundo, PBS NewsHour, Univision, Al Jazeera; most of the biggest public radio stations in the US; many flagship newspapers and TV networks in the Americas, Europe, and Asia; and dozens of leading magazines and journals, including Nature, Scientific American, Rolling Stone, HuffPost, Teen Vogue, and Mother Jones.” [ CCNow About page ]
I urge you to actually read the list above, but it is not complete, for the complete list see here. Is your local public broadcasting station on the list, your local paper, does your local paper print stories from the major press agencies (AFP, Reuters, Bloomberg) or reprint stories from other newspapers or news agencies on that list?
And what does CCNow tell them to help make their stories “more informed and urgent”? CCNow posted a page on their site on 16 August called “10 Climate Change Myths Debunked”.
Quoting from the introduction:
“Scientists the world over agree that climate change is real, it’s happening now, and it’s caused by the burning of fossil fuels. Still, there are a lot of myths being repeated about climate change, and even journalists can get taken in.
Most climate change myths have been perpetuated by fossil fuel companies, their political allies, and others with vested interests in the status quo. For decades, they’ve spent millions of dollars on advertising, think tank “studies,” and lobbying to confuse the public, policymakers, and the press and thereby forestall climate action.
This has led some journalists to soften their coverage — for example, by not connecting climate change to extreme weather — leaving the public misinformed. This guide equips journalists to recognize and refute these myths and report the truth.”
It would be a whole essay just to expose the mis- and dis-information in the introduction, but that wouldn’t leave room for the main course! Let’s take a collective look at the so-called myths by looking at screen shots of their 10 ‘myths’ one at a time. Here is Myth 1:
Before you ask….yes, all ten are like that.
This so-called ‘myth’ is a simple fact. 99% of scientists do not agree about climate change (that is an absurd thing to say) or that that human activity is overheating the planet, not even 99% of IPCC associated scientists agree about that. Nowhere does the IPCC even claim that we (or Climate Change) are “overheating the planet” . An Advanced Google Search restricted to the IPCC domain returns “No results found for “overheating the planet” site:https://www.ipcc.ch.” The IPCC never says that, not once, anywhere on its website nor in AR6.
The IPCC AR6 Summary for Policy Makers uses this wording:
“It is very likely that well-mixed GHGs were the main driver of tropospheric warming since 1979…” AR6 SPM A.1.3
The number of skeptical declarations, statements, proclamations signed by scientists skeptical about climate change around the world are legion. The CO2 Coalition is made up of about 150 scientists from all fields of study, including some of the world’s leading physicists and the 2022 Nobel Prize winner in physics, John Clauser, all of whom disagree with the IPCC view of climate change and do not endorse that human activity is “overheating the planet”.
It is notable that the IPCC no longer even says “dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century” (AR5) but rather, in AR6, 20th century warming doesn’t really get going until 1978/79 or so – not 1950 (mid-20th Century) as many still claim, and certainly not since 1880-1890.
CCNow, seemingly well aware of the scientific ignorance of the average journalist, gives them the wording to use in their climate propaganda stories:
“LANGUAGE FOR JOURNALISTS: Scientists overwhelmingly agree that burning oil, coal and gas is overheating the planet.”
Besides, even using the scientifically (technically) suspect present-day measures of tropospheric warming, such as all the Global Average Surface Temperature metrics, Earth is not overheating. In fact, the global average surface temperature for 2022 was 1.90 ˚F (1.06 ˚C) warmer than the pre-industrial period (1880-1900). [ climate.gov ] The pre-industrial average temperature was 13.7 °C – that plus 1.06 °C makes 14.76 °C – about ¼ degree too cool — less than the 15°C expectation for the Earth to be considered an “Earth-like” planet.
How are the propagandists doing?
Try a web search like this for the exact phrase: “overheating the planet”. I got over 58,000 returns, mostly from the climate alarm mass media.
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Here all ten of the propaganda talking points from CCNow as a slide show. You should be able to click on the left and right arrows to move through the whole set:
This nonsense is repeated and amplified by more than 500 media outlets in 57 countries, with a cumulative reach of over 2 BILLION people.
I want to be clear – CCNow is not the only group doing this. You also have Inside Climate News, which has a convenient Inside Climate News Newsletter that it sends weekly to journalists (and anyone else) who want copy ‘ready-to-print” (requires partnership or permission) or to re-write. There are others, many national or language-specific.
The Climate News – found on the front pages and in the climate/environment sections of your newspaper, magazines, news broadcasts, and the push feed from your social media sites is not news. It is climate alarm propaganada carefully manufactured and shared by professional climate propaganda cabals like Covering Climate Now (CCNow) – they may be “true believers” but they are intentional in their knowing creation of propaganda.
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I have been writing about CCNow for years. Anthony Watts alerted us to their upcoming Massive Collusion-fest to “Get their Stories Straight” on Climate Change. When they say “get stories straight” they mean agree on the propaganda lines to be used in all their stories. Think how many time you have heard a TV or movie detective worrying about allowing suspects time get together to “get their stories straight”.
It is hard to blame home town newspapers and under-funded local TV stations for taking advantage of this sort of journalism-free instant copy. They have to have copy and they don’t have the people to even write it – no less actually do informed research for a third page story.
I encourage readers to take which ever one of the CCNow’s ten propaganda points best aligns with their expertise and tell us just how twisted it is.
With my apologies, I may not be available to reply to your comments, I will be away for a couple of days. Please be civil to one another.
Thanks for reading.