At least one cable news network is attempting to cover climate change the right way.
Al Jazeera America devoted significantly more time to the newest climate change report than its cable news competitors, according to a data search by Think Progress. The network granted 120 minutes of airtime to the National Climate Assessment released by the Obama administration Tuesday, miles ahead of Fox News' abysmal 24 minutes. CNN, MSNBC and Fox News all spent less than 80 minutes each on the assessment.
The numbers are not surprising. Cable news' coverage of climate change has been scarce, and the segments that do attempt to cover it often do it in all the wrong ways. ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox devoted a total of 27 minutes, and one hour and 42 minutes, to climate change on the Sunday shows and the nightly news programs, respectively, in all of 2013.
But Al Jazeera America not only took a turn in the right direction, featuring a number of actual climate scientists, experts, authors and reporters and putting the focus on human impact, but host John Seigenthaler devoted more than 50 percent of his entire show to the NCA alone.
“The threat is no longer distant; it’s affecting Americans right now," Seigenthaler said.
Fox News, however, took a slightly different angle. Laura Ingraham announced the report but then asked if the White House was simply "trying to distract its critics from Benghazi and other problems."