Let there be no doubt where ABC’s Bill Blakemore stands on global warming.
“‘We have been spun by Exxon and Peabody Coal,’ Blakemore said, comparing the situation to the long-running effort by tobacco companies to create uncertainty about the health risks of smoking,” reported Bob Berwyn of the Summit (Colo.) Daily News.
Berwyn covered a panel of journalists at the American Bar Association’s environmental law conference in his March 13 story. He didn’t include scientists in the story but reported the statements of several journalists on the panel.
Berwyn characterized the panel’s consensus: “And even though the basic global warming science – heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere – is ‘third-grade’ stuff, according the Wall Street Journal's John Fialka, the issues have been clouded by a massive, industry funded propaganda and disinformation campaign aimed at creating uncertainty.”
"It's surreal to have pre-eminent scientists tell us very seriously that civilization as we know it is over," said Blakemore, who Berwyn noted has covered global warming for ABC for more than two years. "The scale is unprecedented. It touches every aspect of life."
Only one of the journalists on the panel dared to disagree: Colorado Springs Gazette Editorial Page Editor Sean Paige.
“We (journalists) haven't been skeptical enough of the environmental anxiety industry," Paige said. Berwyn added: “Paige also said he sees a form of eco-McCarthyism on the rise, with the fixation on ‘consensus’ leading to a muzzling of dissenting voices.”
Paige also called attention to the fact that people should question government actions that would create dire costs to the economy, especially when the outcomes of proposed policies are unknown.