Unfortunately, This Two-Minute ABC World News Report Stands Out as Good Climate Reporting ABC News Connects the Weather and Climate Dots

ABC World News runs an accurate, well-rounded piece on weather and climate. Too bad we're talking about it.

I don't watch a lot of network television, so I missed this when it aired last Thursday, but lots of folks in the green blogosphere whose opinions I greatly respect have been touting it.


I will agree with Treehugger's Brian Merchant that it's a "well-researched, well-rounded, entirely accurate story on climate change," and, yes, I too get excited whenever the mainstream media handles climate change appropriately.

But stepping back, it actually drives me nuts that this stands out as good coverage. I actually don't mind that it's barely over two minutes (since that's how Americans digest their news these days), but it really shouldn't be so difficult to tell this story: warmer world, wetter world, more extreme weather events. To use Merchant again, "all it took was a year full of catastrophic extreme weather events to also be confirmed to be the hottest year ever recorded."

All that said, I'm grateful for the piece, and hope that it does help the millions of Americans who still watch nightly news understand that tricky connection between long term climatic shifts and immediate weather events. The talking points they aired were choice:

Derek Arndt, head of NOAA's Climate Monitoring Branch in the National Climate Data Center, said that his agency is "measuring certain types of extreme events that we would expect to see more often in a warming world, and these are indeed increasing." Extreme events like the flooding in Australia and Brazil.

Richard Sommerville, a Nobel award winning climate scientist from University of California at San Diego who led a team of IPCC report authors offered emphatically:

This is no longer something that's theory or conjecture or something that comes out of computer models. We're observing the climate changing. It's real. It's happening. It's scientific fact.

It is great that mainstream Americans tuning into mainstream six o'clock news programs are hearing this laid out in such matter of fact terms, without the false "balance" (in the form of fossil fuel industry funded "experts") that the mainstream media felt obliged to provide for so many years. It's just too bad that it's so unique an occurrence that we feel obliged to celebrate it.

Thanks to Wonk Room's Brad Johnson for finding and posting the clip.

via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less

There is no shortage of proposals from the, um, what's the word for it… huge, group of Democratic presidential candidates this year. But one may stand out from the pack as being not just bold but also necessary; during a CNN town hall about climate change Andrew Yang proposed a "green amendment" to the constitution.

Keep Reading Show less
Me Too Kit

The creator of the Me Too kit — an at home rape kit that has yet to hit the market — has come under fire as sexual assault advocates argue the kit is dangerous and misleading for women.

The kit is marketed as "the first ever at home kit for commercial use," according to the company's website. "Your experience. Your kit. Your story. Your life. Your choice. Every survivor has a story, every survivor has a voice." Customers will soon be able order one of the DIY kits in order to collect evidence "within the confines of the survivor's chosen place of safety" after an assault.

"With MeToo Kit, we are able to collect DNA samples and other tissues, which upon testing can provide the necessary time-sensitive evidence required in a court of law to identify a sexual predator's involvement with sexual assault," according to the website.

Keep Reading Show less

Villagers rejoice as they receive the first vaccines ever delivered via drone in the Congo

The area's topography makes transporting medicines a treacherous task.

Photo by Henry Sempangi Senyule

When we discuss barriers to healthcare in the developed world, affordability is commonly the biggest concern. But for some in the developing world, physical distance and topography can be the difference between life and death.

Widjifake, a hard-to-reach village in northwestern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) with a population of 6,500, struggles with having consistent access to healthcare supplies due to the Congo River and its winding tributaries.

It can take up to three hours for vehicles carrying supplies to reach the village.

Keep Reading Show less
via Keith Boykin / Twitter

Fox News and President Trump seem like they may be headed for a breakup. "Fox is a lot different than it used to be," Trump told reporters in August after one of the network's polls found him trailing for Democrats in the 2020 election.

"There's something going on at Fox, I'll tell you right now. And I'm not happy with it," he continued.

Some Fox anchors have hit back at the president over his criticisms. "Well, first of all, Mr. President, we don't work for you," Neil Cavuto said on the air. "I don't work for you. My job is to cover you, not fawn over you or rip you, just report on you."

Keep Reading Show less