Climate change was a central topic of conversation during coverage of Hurricane Ian, with the phrase mentioned on CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS and NBC more than 600 times in a one-week period.
A review of Fox News Digital transcripts found that CNN accounted for the most mentions of climate change, with the phrase uttered 311 times between September 26 and October 2.
MSNBC wasn’t far behind, as climate change was mentioned in its hurricane coverage 212 times, mostly during prime-time shows.
For its part, CBS News brought up climate change 61 times, while ABC News echoed the phrase 27 times and NBC News 23 times.
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The vast majority of these cases saw the hosts, reporters and guests claim that climate change was causing the oceans to warm and thus exacerbate and intensify major natural disasters, including wildfires and storms like hurricanes.
MSNBC’s “The ReidOut” host Joy Reid, in particular, spent a lot of time last Wednesday talking about climate change with co-anchor Ali Velshi.
As Velshi reported live from the storm’s impact, Reid claimed that global warming had allowed hurricanes to “proliferate.”
“There are a lot of things that have changed on earth that have made these things worse, right? These things are thriving because the water is warming. We stopped calling it global warming for political reasons, but that’s what it is. . Our earth is warming and I think there’s no doubt that’s feeding these beasts,” Reid said.
One of the network’s meteorologists, Michelle Grossman, also discussed climate change in the context of Hurricane Ian. On Friday, “Morning Joe” co-host Willie Geist asked if, in his experience, Ian’s movement from one body of water to another was unusual for a storm near the Florida coast .
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“You know, we’ve seen so many oddities this season. We’ve seen storms go from the Atlantic to the Pacific, back to the Atlantic. With this storm, you know, I think what stood out, stood out as a weak storm and then it intensified rapidly. We don’t see that often and that’s a connection to climate change,” Grossman said.
In a separate segment, “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski went a step further and claimed Hurricane Ian was the result of “man-made” climate change.
On CNN, host Don Lemon was shut down Tuesday by the acting director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Hurricane Center after he asked about the effect climate change had on the hurricane ian
Lemon noted that meteorologists have said Hurricane Ian could enter “another period of rapid intensification” and asked Jamie Rhome what effect climate change has had on the “phenomena.”
Rhome replied that they could return to a discussion of climate change at another time and stated that rapid intensification was probably almost done. Lemon, seemingly unsatisfied with the answer, pressed Rhome again on what effect climate change might have on the phenomena.
“I don’t think you can tie climate change to any one event. Cumulatively, climate change may be making storms worse. But to tie it to any one event, I would caution against that,” Rhome said. .
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Hurricane Ian slammed into southwest Florida on Wednesday as a Category 4 storm, knocking out power to more than a million residents and prompting safety warnings from Florida officials.
The claim that Hurricane Ian was partly or entirely the result of climate change has also appeared in recent days in print articles scattered across the Internet.
Media outlets including the New York Times, Associated Press, Politico, NPR and Axios have published stories reporting that climate change is to blame for Hurricane Ian and the storm’s rapid intensification. A recent article in Time magazine said that “the science is well known” that climate change created the conditions for Hurricane Ian.
Major liberal media networks have often attributed a series of natural disasters to climate change in recent years.
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In February 2021, after a winter storm caused widespread power outages for 4 million Texans that left nearly 100 dead, major media outlets including MSNBC, The Washington Post, and CNN blamed the problem on climate change and they called for a series of radical environmental policies. . Similar on-air conversations and print articles emerged in the wake of California’s recent power grid problems, which were often blamed on climate change-induced wildfires.
Fox News’ Thomas Catenacci and Hanna Panreck contributed to this report.