COMMENTS: The World is Getting Warmer

A pair of angles about climate change combined to make global warming the Story of the Day. NBC led from Copenhagen where the United Nations convened its global warming conference. CBS and ABC led from Washington, where the Environmental Protection Agency ruled that greenhouse gases endanger human health, allowing the agency to regulate carbon dioxide emissions under the Clean Air Act. Both NBC and CBS followed up with travelogue features on low-lying nations threatened by climate change. CBS took a jocular approach on the tourist beaches of The Maldives; NBC portrayed the desperate straits facing the peasants of the Bangladesh Delta.

NBC's Anne Thompson and ABC's Bob Woodruff filed from Copenhagen, where diplomats from close to 200 nations met to negotiate a treaty to cut carbon levels in the atmosphere. NBC's Thompson called it a matter of "life or death." ABC's Woodruff pointed out that finance was as big an issue as science: "The United Nations says poor nations need tens of billions of dollars every year to help adapt to everything from rising sea levels to dying crops."

As for the science, both correspondents covered the reaction to the hacked e-mails by climatologists at the University of East Anglia in England. ABC's Woodruff said the messages revealed that the scientists appeared to "fudge data." NBC's Thompson cited the insistence of "skeptics" that the messages show data manipulation. Diplomats from Saudi Arabia used the e-mails in "an effort to derail the talks," ABC's Woodruff reported. "Oil-rich Saudi Arabia is resisting carbon cuts," noted NBC's Thompson.


You must be logged in to this website to leave a comment. Please click here to log in so you can participate in the discussion.