The alarmist journalists at Good Morning America on Sunday hyped a new report that fretted over whether global warming will spell the end of coffee. Reporter John Muller warned, "...The coffee bean may be going to way of the dinosaur. We're talking about extinction if you believe this new study..." [MP3 audio here.]
Painting a dark picture, Muller worried, "Scientists from the Kew Royal Botanical Gardens ran computer models on global warming, finding that if their worst estimates come true, in 68 years, there would be nowhere on Earth suitable for wild coffee growth."
To compliment the fear-mongering, the journalist included on-the-street interviews with people offering concerns such as "I don't think I could live if I didn't have coffee."
An article on CBSNews.com skipped any subtlety and went directly to scare tactics:
"Those of us who enjoy our morning cup of coffee, we may not always realize that future climate change due to extreme temperatures, increased precipitation, really could in some ways put that at risk," [Todd Sanford, a climate scientist from the Union of Concerned Scientists] added.
Increased carbon emissions have been linked to global climate change. So for coffee lovers, the idea of waking up without their morning brew could be a wake-up call to lead a more eco-friendly life.
At the very end of his report, Muller finally referenced another perspective, noting that "skeptics of global warming will tell you it's all tempest in a teapot." He added, "But, regardless, even if the worst case scenario were to come true, That's 68 years away."
On the November 13 edition of NBC's Today, reporter Anne Thompson used Hurricane Sandy to promote global warming. She intoned, "Now some politicians are connecting the dots, blaming the gases that come from burning coal, oil and gas for changing the climate."
A partial transcript of the November 11 GMA segment can be found below:
DAN HARRIS: If you're drinking your morning cup of coffee right now, prepare to do a spit take. We've got potentially catastrophic news for you.
BIANNA GOLODRYGA: That's right. Your morning cup of joe could become a thing of the past. Experts say the main bean used to make coffee is drying up. And ABC's John Muller is here with more. Say it ain't so, John.
JOHN MULLER: You got that right. All of you coffee drinkers out there, I'm feeling your pain on this one. No matter how you like your coffee, the coffee bean may be going to way of the dinosaur. We're talking about extinction if you believe this new study, which says coffee may be extinct sooner than you think. From a simple cup of joe to a double espresso shot mocha frappuccino. It's what opens eyes of more than half of all Americans on a daily basis. But a new study is dark with no sugar. It says climate change has the wild Arabica coffee plant headed for extinction. As soon as the year 2080.
MAN: Devastated is not too strong a word.
SECOND MAN: Right now I'm addicted to coffee.
THIRD MAN: I need something that's going to give me that energy.
WOMAN: I don't think I could live if I didn't have coffee.
MUELLER: Scientists from the Kew Royal Botanical Gardens ran computer models on global warming, finding that if their worst estimates come true, in 68 years, there would be nowhere on Earth suitable for wild coffee growth. Because wild coffee ensures healthy genetic diversity, It could mean extinction of even beans grown on farms. Imagine it. A world without coffee. How would people everywhere conquer alarm clocks and survive their commutes to work?
MULLER: Now, skeptics of global warming will tell you it's all tempest in a teapot. But, regardless, even if the worst case scenario were to come true, That's 68 years away. So, anyone enjoying their coffee this morning, take heart that we'll be extinct before the coffee bean, according to this study.
-- Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.