The recent Arctic chill has given Fox News an excuse to give "skeptics" a platform to deny climate change and bash climate science. But the network has been remiss to discuss the topic during periods of record heat.This is hardly surprising. In the Media Matters roundup of the "13 Dumbest Things Media Said About Climate Change In 2013", Fox scored seven times. Rush Limbaugh, who even a Republican scientist recently said knows nothing about science, was a distant second, with two.
During their coverage of cold weather from January 2 to January 8, Fox News brought up climate change nine times, casting doubt on it every single time. They also devoted a significant amount of coverage to a ship getting stuck in Antarctic ice to mock climate change during this period. But this strongly contrasts Fox News' coverage of extreme heat events, in which the network is typically silent on the topic of global warming. A previous Media Matters analysis found that, in a parallel week-long time period in 2011, Fox News did not mention climate change once while reporting on an unusually intense heat wave. And throughout the entire month of July 2012, which was the hottest month on record for the United States, the network discussed climate change in the heat wave's context once -- in order to deny it.
Meanwhile, MSNBC primarily featured the anti-scientific "skeptic" claims to dismiss them in its five segments on the topic. CNN meteorologist Chad Meyers rebutted the "skeptic" claims in one segment, but in CNN's only other segment on the topic, the network portrayed the science of global warming as up for a "debate" by non-scientists.To reiterate: among actual scientists, this is considered settled science. The research is overwhelming. The existence of winter does not disprove global warming, and in fact, some scientists attribute the recent deep freeze to global warming, an idea that is not new. Of course, Fox doesn't care about the actual scientific facts; Fox has an agenda, and that agenda does not include trying to find and report the truth.