FNC's Craig Rivera: Is Oil Spill Our 'Avatar?'

Fox News Channel's Craig Rivera, on Sunday's Geraldo At Large, in a shipboard interview from the Gulf of Mexico, actually asked a conservationist if the oil spill there was a real world equivalent of the fictional disaster seen in the recent James Cameron blockbuster as he pressed: "Do you see what's happening in the oil industry and offshore drilling comparable or some kind of parallel to, like, the movie Avatar?"

After Steiner theorized: "It certainly could be," Rivera then made the following hard transition to an interview with Avatar star Sigourney Weaver: "Although the fight Sigourney Weaver and director James Cameron are waging to protect the rights of the indigenous people of the Amazon from a huge hydroelectric plant is a world away from the situation in the gulf oil spill, the principle is the same - protecting the planet from those interested in only quick profits." Rivera then aired a clip of Weaver boasting that Avatar showed the world "how concerned people are about our planet." [video below the fold]

The following is an excerpt from the Craig Rivera piece as it was aired on the May 9 edition of Geraldo At Large:

CRAIG RIVERA: Do you see what's happening in the oil industry and offshore drilling comparable or some kind of parallel to, like, the movie Avatar?

RICK STEINER, CONSERVATIONIST: You know these environments - we're terrestrial primates and so we get what goes on, on land. But humans haven't spent a lot of time on the ocean. Most people haven't. And so it's a little bit of foreign environment for people. But these are precious, productive environments. The oceans sustain much of the life on Earth. So, yeah, this is a treasure, this is a treasure, a treasure. A national treasure that we shouldn't put at risk.

RIVERA: So this is our Avatar.

STEINER: It certainly could be.

RIVERA: Although the fight Sigourney Weaver and director James Cameron are waging to protect the rights of the indigenous people of the Amazon from a huge hydroelectric plant is a world away from the situation in the gulf oil spill, the principle is the same - protecting the planet from those interested in only quick profits.

RIVERA TO SIGOURNEY WEAVER: Tell me how is your life affected knowing the change that Avatar has had on the world making people more environmentally conscious when you went to visit these people in their natural environment?

SIGOURNEY WEAVER: You know what I feel that Avatar did was, was show the world how concerned people are about our planet. That we are aware of the damage we are doing to our planet. That it is time, more than time, for us to stop now and all help each other find energy efficient ways of producing energy.

GERALDO RIVERA: You know, watching Sigourney Weaver, Craig, it just seems to me that this may be a pivotal moment to re-energize a real environmental movement not, you know, a politicians and others who are claiming, making preposterous claims not backed by science but having kids and people get involved the way they did in previous disasters. Three Mile Island for instance or Chernobyl.

CRAIG RIVERA: They, they actually the environmentalists see the deep water horizon disaster as the Three Mile Island, even the Exxon-Valdez, a way to change the industry. You know the tanker industry was changed. The nuclear industry was changed. So this is gonna be a catalyst and environmentalists want to see more of a move to cleaner energy as a result.

Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens
Geoffrey Dickens is the Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center.