The report finds that MSNBC was the most accurate cable network in 2013, and CNN could be a lot more accurate if it would stop hosting "debates" about climate science.
By Chris Mooney
According to a Pew study released last year, 38 percent of US adults watch cable news. So if you want to know why so many Americans deny or doubt the established science of climate change, the content they're receiving on cable news may well point the way.
According to a new study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, misinformation about climate science on cable news channels is pretty common. The study found that last year, 30 percent of CNN's climate-related segments were misleading, compared with 72 percent for Fox News and just 8 percent for MSNBC. The study methodology was quite strict: segments that contained "any inaccurate or misleading representations of climate science" were classified as misleading.
By far the worst performer was Fox (this is hardly the first study to associate this channel with sowing reams of doubt about climate change). Notably, the UCS report found that "more than half" of the channel's misleading content was due to The Five, a program where the hosts regularly argue against climate science. For instance, Greg Gutfeld, one of the show's regular co-hosts, charged on September 30 that "experts pondered hiding the news that the earth hadn't...warmed in 15 years, despite an increase in emissions. They concluded that the missing heat was trapped in the ocean. It's like blaming gas on the dog if the ocean was your dog." (To understand what is actually going on with the alleged global warming "pause," and why the deep oceans may well explain part of the story, click here.)
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