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NY Times' Bias Shows In Global Warming Report - What Else Is New?

11 August 2017

The document containing all these findings and more is a 543-page draft special report from the US Global Change Research Program, a federally-mandated assessment of climate science not yet published but leaked this week to the New York Times. "If the administration is backing out of the Paris agreement and there's not a strong backing of the idea of human caused climate change, than our report will most surely come into conflict with some of those stated ideas".

It reported that people were anxious the study would be publicly released, but those who worked on the report are pushing back against the claims. But this week, the paper's hyperbole about a government climate report was called out not only by other journalists and a Republican member of Congress, but also by scientists who were quoted in the article itself.

President Trump has not talked directly about the science since taking office, but on the Hugh Hewitt radio show in 2015 he said: "I'm not a believer in man-made global warming". As others have pointed out - and The New York Times should have noticed - drafts of this report have been published and made widely available online months ago during the public comment period.

The report also included a graphic (click image for version) that highlighted the impact such metrics had throughout the globe, from severe wildfires in Canada to sweltering heat in India.

Oops. On Wednesday, the Times was forced to correct its story.

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The report came out just days after The New York Times published a draft USA government report on climate, which said that the average temperature in the United States had risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and that recent decades had been the warmest in the past 1,500 years.

"The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration", noted the lead of the article, which was written by Lisa Friedman.

Another egg on the face of the New York Times.

"The report concludes that even if humans immediately stopped emitting greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the world would still feel at least an additional 0.50 degrees Fahrenheit (0.30 degrees Celsius) of warming over this century compared with today", the NYT story states. The last one was from 2014, and it made crystal clear we were running out of time to avoid catastrophe.

NOAA said global warming and El Niño were major factors in the record-breaking warmth. Pielke said former Obama science adviser John Holdren was "wrong" about human influence on droughts because there has been no increase in droughts in the U.S.

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The bad news is that "the observed increase in global carbon emissions over the past 15-20 years has been consistent with higher scenarios".

"In my area of expertise, it underscores that there is very little support for claims of increases in hurricanes, flood, drought, tornadoes", Pielke told me via e-mail. "After the news cycle is over, we'll be right back where we were before on the climate issue".

Yet the Times treats the contents of this report as if it were some kind of revealed truth from on high. Why? California billionaire and climate activist Tom Steyer tweeted that, "The Administration can not legally ignore this report".

It's unclear what, if any, impact the report will really have.

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NY Times' Bias Shows In Global Warming Report - What Else Is New?