CBS Serves Whine with Global Warming
Global warming may doom the Napa Valley, CBS News warned its July 12 ‚ÄúEvening News‚ÄĚ audience. Yet correspondent John Blackstone excluded any scientists, including those who otherwise believe in man-made global warming, who warn that new computer models are inconclusive or don‚Äôt match up against recorded climate patterns.
‚ÄúNew research says global warming threatens to make the Napa Valley too hot to make fine wine,‚ÄĚ Blackstone warned. A new study by Purdue University‚Äôs Noah Diffenbaugh, Blackstone added, predicts that ‚Äúacross the country global warming could destroy more than 80 percent of the best vineyards.‚ÄĚ
But scientists who had a skeptical take on Diffenbaugh‚Äôs conclusions were
missing from Blackstone‚Äôs report.
In a July 11 article on Diffenbaugh‚Äôs study, San Francisco Chronicle environment reporter Jane Kay cited University of Alabama‚Äôs John Christy and the National Center for Atmospheric Research‚Äôs (NCAR) Kenneth Trenberth as skeptics of Diffenbaugh‚Äôs conclusions.
Christy found ‚Äúthat using a model to reproduce past observations‚ÄĚ was not ‚Äúsuccessful for the years 1910-2003‚ÄĚ when calculating central California climate changes for a recent study published in the American Meteorological Society‚Äôs Journal of Climate, Kay reported.
‚ÄúI would not base economic decisions on the output of regional predictions from these models,‚ÄĚ Christy told the Chronicle. ‚ÄúAs Alabama‚Äôs state climatologist, I‚Äôve watched agriculture closely during these past 20 years, and I‚Äôve seen how farmers have applied clever adaptations to overcome many negative impacts on their produce, including those from climate variations.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúModels are not good enough for this purpose in my view,‚ÄĚ agreed NCAR climate analyst Kevin E. Trenberth, who is no global warming skeptic. Kay added that most of Trenberth‚Äôs colleagues ‚Äúdon‚Äôt yet accept predictions of future effects on crops,‚ÄĚ even though they believe in melting glaciers producing ‚Äúrising sea levels.‚ÄĚ
Blackstone also left out a key fact reported by the CBS Web site: historically, climate change devastated grape growing well before the industrialization which many environmentalists blame for today‚Äôs climate change.
‚ÄúA thousand years ago when Viking explorers arrived on the coasts of eastern Canada and New England, they named the region Vinland, a designation that has perplexed many historians since grapes are uncommon there now,‚ÄĚ CBS News and the Associated Press reported in a July 12 article available on CBSNews.com.
The CBS/AP article even cited Diffenbaugh noting that English vineyards ‚Äď now resurging from warmer weather ‚Äď got a chilly reception in ‚Äúthe Little Ice Age‚ÄĚ that begin in the Middle Ages.