On 700 Club, Bozell preached hot air about global warmingJuly 12, 2006 5:28 PM EDT ››› KURT DONALDSON
On the July 10 edition of the Christian Broadcasting Network's (CBN) The 700 Club, Media Research Center president L. Brent Bozell III misleadingly suggested that there is no scientific consensus on the existence of global warming. Asserting that the media "can't decide" on the science because "[o]ne moment they're declaring ... there's global warming. The next moment ... there's global cooling," Bozell revived a favorite argument of some global warming skeptics that, in the 1970s, scientists were warning that the earth was cooling at an alarming rate. In fact, the magnitude of the consensus among scientists that global warming exists and that human activity is a contributing factor dwarfs the pool of scientists 30 years earlier who warned that the earth was cooling.
CBN correspondent David Brody introduced Bozell's quote by claiming that "[n]o one can seem to figure out global warming." Bozell said: "They can't decide which chaos it is. One moment they're declaring it's a matter of fact that there's global warming. The next moment, they turn around and they say it's a matter of fact that there's global cooling."
But contrary to Bozell's suggestion that there is no consensus among scientists on global warming, as Media Matters for America has documented (here, here, and here), scientific organizations such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the National Academies of Science (NAS) share the consensus view that, according to a NAS report, "most of the observed warming of the last 50 years is likely to have been due to the increase in greenhouse gas concentrations." This consensus presents a contrast to what British Arctic Survey climate modeler William Connolley called on his personal website a "mythology that 'journals were stuffed full of articles predicting an imminent ice age in the '70's'." In fact, according to Connelly, "closer probing reveals few of these articles" in scientific journals, in fact, predicted cooling.
As Media Matters has noted, nationally syndicated columnist George Will has repeatedly claimed that scientists were convinced in the 1970s that global cooling was occurring but have since become similarly convinced that global warming is occurring.
"[G]reenhouse sceptics" are fond of claiming that "all scientists" were predicting cooling a decade ago and now they've switched to warming. However, closer probing reveals few of these articles.
Further, as Media Matters documented, a 1976 study published in the journal Science has been cited and misrepresented by global warming skeptics. The paper, "Variations in the Earth's Orbit: Pacemaker of the Ice Ages," addressed only long-term trends in the Earth's orbital and glaciation cycle "with periods of 20,000 years and longer" and as climate website RealClimate.org pointed out, the Science study "qualified its predictions by 'in the absence of human perturbation of the climate system' as did many papers at the time." Indeed, the Science study addressed the impact on the global climate only through the lens of the natural orbital cycle and excluded human contributions "such as those due to the burning of fossil fuels." Further, according to the 2001 NAS study Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions, the scientific consensus that warming will occur takes into account both human contributions to greenhouse gases and natural occurrences such as glacial cycles, volcanic activity, and solar irradiance cycles.
From the July 10 edition of CBN's The 700 Club:
BRODY: No one can seem to figure out global warming. Remember this Time magazine cover? "Be Worried. Be Very Worried." But what about 30 years ago, when some in the media said there was an impending ice age?
BOZELL: They can't decide which chaos it is. One moment they're declaring it's a matter of fact that there's global warming. The next moment, they turn around and they say it's a matter of fact that there's global cooling.