Climate reporting “too balanced” say scientists


Cosmos – April 19, 2007

I am amazed. How can a scientist say that talking about an issue from all sides is “too balanced” for the news coverage? Isn’t it the job of scientists (and reporters) to completely discuss and challenge a theory so that it is as solid as can be? I am an engineer by education (although no longer practicing) and I distinctly remember being taught that we should form a hypothesis and then challenge that hypothesis with multiple tests and different points of view. My fear is that when we don’t listen to the entire community, someone will have made a mistake.

I don’t believe that we should accept that global warming is a myth and is not caused by the influences of mankind. Nor do I believe that we should accept that humans could not change the climate in a very dangerous manner. I think we should analyze the position of both sides and determine a reasonable test that can eliminate the objections of the other. Not acknowledging that both sides have strong evidence on their side is the equivalent of the ostrich sticking its head in the sand.

I guess I will keep up the effort here of balanced reporting even though Mr. Hennessy doesn’t want me to.

Airing the views of climate change sceptics in the media may only be serving to keep the global warming controversy boiling, argue scientists.

Leading climate change experts have warned the World Conference of Science Journalists in Melbourne, Australia, that a balanced view does not always reflect the consensus of the research community.

…media attention on “the view of a handful of climate change sceptics” amplifies their opinions and “implies that there is little agreement about the basic facts of global warming”.

Balanced reporting, he said, “perpetuates the public’s perception that scientists are in disarray, which is misleading in the case of climate change”.

Emphasis on the sceptic view does not help public understanding of climate change, said Love.

I originally found this article by a post on this blog which is a very interesting read if you have the time. The original article can be found here and you can read the rest of the parts that I left out of my editorial.

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2 thoughts on “Climate reporting “too balanced” say scientists”

  1. Scott says:

    So anthropogenic global warming should be the only view discussed. It is authoritatively correct, not to be disputed or doubted, and opposing or alternative views are not to be mentioned.

    Is this not the very definition of dogmatism that is usaually leveled at religious faiths? Ann Coulter would have a field day denouncing (again) the religion of global warming and its carbon credit indulgences.

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