Media

The Weather Channel rains on Breitbart's anti-climate change parade

The Weather Channel's Kait Parker and Jim Cantore report on a snow storm in Washington, D.C.. (Getty Images/Bill Clark)

Today's forecast: The Weather Channel is bringing the heat.

After Breitbart columnist James Delingpole used a Weather Channel video to try to prove climate change isn't real, the cable station is hitting back.

"Note to Breitbart: Earth Is Not Cooling, Climate Change Is Real and Please Stop Using Our Video to Mislead Americans," the Weather Channel published in a column Tuesday afternoon.

The Weather Channel wrote:

Global warming is not expected to end anytime soon, despite what Breitbart.com wrote in an article published last week.

Though we would prefer to focus on our usual coverage of weather and climate science, in this case we felt it important to add our two cents — especially because a video clip from weather.com (La Niña in Pacific Affects Weather in New England) was prominently featured at the top of the Breitbart article. Breitbart had the legal right to use this clip as part of a content-sharing agreement with another company, but there should be no assumption that The Weather Company endorses the article associated with it.

Meteorologist Kait Parker, who appears in the video Breitbart used, also issued a blistering criticism of the conservative website and its use of her reporting.

"They used a completely unrelated video about La Niña with my face in it to attempt to back their point," Parker said in a new video. "Here's the thing — science doesn't care about your opinion. Cherrypicking and twisting the facts will not change the future nor the fact — note fact, not opinion — that the earth is warming."

In the piece published late last month, Delingpole argued that the fact that "global land temperatures have plummeted by one degree Celsius since the middle of this year" is more evidence that the "global warming scare" is coming to an end.

"The last three years may eventually come to be seen as the final death rattle of the global warming scare," he wrote, arguing that "lefties" receive their information on the climate from "unreliable fake news sites like Buzzfeed."

But in its own column Tuesday, the Weather Channel sought to debunk some of the claims made in Delingpole's piece.

On the cooling of the earth's temperature, the Weather Channel explained:

This number comes from one satellite-based estimate of temperatures above land areas in the lower atmosphere. Data from the other two groups that regularly publish satellite-based temperature estimates show smaller drops, more typical of the decline one would expect after a strong El Niño event.

Temperatures over land give an incomplete picture of global-scale temperature. Most of the planet — about 70 percent — is covered by water, and the land surface warms and cools more quickly than the ocean. Land-plus-ocean data from the other two satellite groups, released after the Breitbart article, show that Earth’s lower atmosphere actually set a record high in November 2016.

One last thing…
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