The Weather Channel: A Network With Integrity Gets Real

The Weather Channel is the first cable television network to take a formal position on global warming -- to say not only that it's real, but also that it's a result of human activities. Its important decision to join the mainstream scientific community in acknowledging the threat from global warming should serve as a wake-up call to those meteorologists who have yet to connect the dots between increasing episodes of extreme weather and global warming.

The Weather Channel's more than 120 expert meteorologists reach into the living rooms of over 89 million TV viewers, and its award-winning website averages 20 million visitors each month. Led by its full-time global warming expert Dr. Heidi Cullen (another first among mainstream media), the network continues to expand its coverage of global warming issues on TV and online.

Cullen told Grist last year, "When I got here, there was some skepticism even within the group here as to whether global warming was real or not. But over the past couple of years, I've had so many conversations with forecast meteorologists, and a lot of them say, 'You know what? This isn't the same weather I was forecasting 30 or 40 years ago.' And I think among the meteorology community now, there is a sense that patterns look different, and weird things are happening."

The Weather Channel is also the newest addition to the Virtual March, and deserves special thanks for standing up and joining the fight so publicly. The network's spokesperson told me that "joining the virtual march is a natural extension of our commitment to informing and educating people and making a difference in their lives, given the threat posed by the Earth's rapidly changing climate."