"Ambivalent Coverage of Climate Change's 'New Normal'"

"Considering the importance of the information, the mainstream press provided surprisingly limited analysis."

"On Tuesday, the American Meteorological Society released its annual 'State of the Climate' report, a hefty, 258-page document chronicling changes in global warming data. Compiled by members of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, along with 384 scientists from 52 countries, the report is used to set and influence domestic climate policy and distributes statistics that form the baseline for discussions of climate change.

This year's report holds a wide roster of data—ranging from interesting to doomsday—and most major newspapers and wire serves at least ran something based on the report press release. But considering the importance, and acute detail, of the information contained in the release, the mainstream press provided a surprisingly limited amount of analysis.

Reuters filed a short summary, 'Signs of new climate 'normal' apparent in hot 2012 report,' culling information entirely from NOAA's press release, with one skeptical insertion framing the slowing surface temperature rise: 'The decrease in temperatures has been noted by climate-change skeptics who question the impact of human activities.'"

Alexis Sobel Fitts reports for Columbia Journalism Review's The Observatory blog
August 12, 2013.

Source: CJR, 08/14/2013