photo: Center for American Progress Action Fund/Creative Commons
I normally wouldn't want to waste too much of my time or yours parsing what Fox News does, but putting up what Huffington Post describes as "little more than a personal ad" seeking out people who can debunk a comment that Al Gore made to Bill O'Reilly--wherein Gore accurately linked extreme winter weather with climate change--just is too stupid not to comment upon. And this by their science columnist no less.HuffPo has the full text of the request for comment at the link above, and Climate Progress has a usually thorough explanation of the science behind why Gore is right in stating,
A rise in global temperature can create all sorts of havoc, ranging from hotter dry spells to colder winters, along with increasingly violent storms, flooding, forest fires and loss of endangered species.
Two things jump out at me:
- While at first it may seem a paradox that something called global warming can lead to snowier winters and colder temperatures, just a cursory examination of the literature explains how the two aren't incompatible in the slightest. Combined with the overwhelming evidence that the Arctic itself is experiencing record warmth, and record winter lows of extent of sea ice, I just don't understand how people continually have to be told that just because it's snowing outside doesn't mean global warming isn't happening. It's simply not that intellectually challenging to understand the broad stroke of what's happening, even if the exact mechanics are quite complicated and our understanding of them continues to evolve and expand. Anyone that didn't fail high school science can grasp how this is happening.
- Come of Fox News, Get over Gore! Continuing to jump on Al Gore, when he hasn't been the leading face of the movement advocating for action to combat climate change for a couple years, is just juvenile. Granted the request is topical in that it's in response to a comment that Gore made and Gore is still active within the movement in a less prominent role, but the vehemence with which Al Gore is opposed here and in general boggles my mind.
When it comes down to it, for all his earnestness and commitment to the issue, in terms of his actual words and actions, Gore is very middle of the road within the climate change action community. There are plenty of other people who advocate much more radical changes. It's somehow representative of the general US public's knowledge of climate change science and politics that Fox News and other right wing commentators can still attract audiences by casting stones at someone who hasn't been in the center of the spotlight for a couple years now.
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More on Global Warming & Winter:
Just Because It's Snowing Out Doesn't Mean Global Warming is Fake, Say It With Me People
A Warming World Will Still Severe Snowstorms - Columbia University Scientists Remind Us
Finally, Rebuttal to 'Snow Means No Global Warming' Nonsense Aired in Mainstream Media (Video)