Study: Conservative media driving denial of global warming

August 11, 2013 by  
Filed under Solar Energy Tips

Are you a Fox News viewer? If so, then you probably distrust scientists who believe in manmade global warming, according to a new study published in the journal Public Understanding of Science.

According to researchers, there is a growing gap in what conservatives and liberals think about global warming, driven by “partisan media” outlets.

“There is a growing divide in how conservatives and liberals in the USA understand the issue of global warming,” reads the study by Yale Project on Climate Communication.

“Results demonstrate that conservative media use decreases trust in scientists which, in turn, decreases certainty that global warming is happening,” reads the study. “By contrast, use of non-conservative media increases trust in scientists, which, in turn, increases certainty that global warming is happening.”

Liberal-leaning bloggers have also jumped on this study, using it as a way to showcase how Fox News is driving skepticism of global warming.

“The results suggest that conservative media consumption (specifically Fox News and Rush Limbaugh) decreases viewer trust in scientists, which in turn decreases belief that global warming is happening,” according to SkepticalScience.

“In contrast, consumption of non-conservative media (specifically ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, NPR, The New York Times, and The Washington Post) increases consumer trust in scientists, and in turn belief that global warming is happening,” SkepticalScience adds.

The liberal group Media Matters listed five ways that Fox News added to global warming skepticism, including quoting former Fox News host Glenn Beck lambasting climate scientists for lying about global warming.

“Do I believe scientists? No. They’ve lied to us about global warming,” Beck said.

Despite mockery from liberal groups, recent evidence suggests that warming predictions often cited by alarmists should be ratcheted downward given that global temperatures have been flat for about the last 15 years.

The Economist reported that “temperatures have not really risen over the past ten years” and that “[o]ver the past 15 years air temperatures at the Earth’s surface have been flat.”

“Since 1998, there has been an unexplained ‘standstill’ in the heating of the Earth’s atmosphere,” BBC News reported in May.

The UN’s climate authority predicted global temperatures will rise rise by as much as 3 degrees Celsius in the short term, but other research from Europe cast some doubt on this estimate.

UK scientists reported that global temperatures would only rise between 0.9 degrees Celsius and 2.0 degrees Celsius, and Norwegian scientists found that the earth may warm only 1.9 degrees Celsius.

“The most extreme projections are looking less likely than before,” Dr. Alexander Otto of the University of Oxford told BBC News.

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