Oops! Nets Wrong On Warming; Arctic Ice Still There

Wrong again! It must stink being a network global warming alarmist. They just can't seem to get their stories straight.

It's only been a couple months when the networks were screaming about Arctic ice disappearing this summer. And, no surprise, they were entirely wrong. By 1.74 million square miles.

As Maxwell Smart used to say: "Missed it by that much."

Less than three months ago, NBC's Anne Thompson was warning ominously of ice loss. "But this summer, some scientists say that ice could retreat so dramatically that open water covers the North Pole, so much so that you could sail across it."

Or not. According to a September 16 National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) report, such predictions were off. Way off.

NSIDC reported ice loss was less than in 2007. "On September 12, 2008, sea ice extent dropped to 4.52 million square kilometers (1.74 million square miles). This appears to have been the lowest point of the year, as sea has now begun its annual cycle of growth in response to autumn cooling," according to the organization.

Two days after Thompson's report, on July 30, ABC weatherman Sam Champion told the "Good Morning America" audience that Arctic ice loss was on a record pace. "Every summer we're on a record pace for losing it last summer and this summer we're at the exact same pace."

The NSIDC assessment makes it clear that claim was also wrong, calling it "above the record minimum set on September 16, 2007." "The Arctic sea ice cover appears to have reached its minimum extent for the year, the second-lowest extent recorded since the dawn of the satellite era. "

Earlier in the summer, media outlets warned ominously that the ice could melt away. "Today" host Lester Holt described the story as "surprising and, frankly, alarming news from the scientific community, a new report that says the North Pole could soon be ice-free."

This fits an ongoing pattern of media hype about climate change where networks no longer report the issue with any sense of objectivity. A study published by the Business & Media Institute earlier this year showed how rarely dissenting voices were included in the climate debate. The study found that global warming proponents overwhelmingly outnumbered those with dissenting opinions. On average for every skeptic there were nearly 13 proponents featured. ABC did a slightly better job with a 7-to-1 ratio, while CBS's ratio was abysmal at nearly 38-to-1.

Dan Gainor
Dan Gainor is The Boone Pickens Free Market Fellow and Vice President for Business and Culture for the Media Research Center