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CBS Stunned By Climate Change 'Inconvenient Truth...On the Way to the Apocalypse'

Thursday's CBS Evening News was practically shocked by a fact that threatens the agenda of radical environmentalists – global temperatures have simply not risen in 15 years. Scott Pelley trumpeted how "on the eve of a major new report on climate change...a surprising discovery." Mark Phillips hyped that "another inconvenient truth has emerged on the way to the apocalypse....the global atmosphere hasn't been warming lately."

The correspondent spotlighted how "since 1998, while the amount of greenhouse gases continued to rise, the air temperature hasn't." He also pointed out that this development "makes the task for the world's majority of climate scientists...more difficult. For the skeptics, it's ammunition." [MP3 audio available here; video below]

Anchor Scott Pelley teased Phillips' report with his "surprising discovery" phrase, and introduced the segment with similar language: "Scientists working with the United Nations have been poring over data on climate and greenhouse gases. Their report is due out tomorrow. But anyone expecting it to show steadily-rising air temperatures could be in for a surprise."

The CBS journalist led with his bombastic "apocalypse" line, and continued by explaining the discovery. Phillips then turned to Brian King of the National Oceanography Center in the UK, who contended that "science thinks the extra heat has gone into the oceans". The correspondent added that "scientists are surer of their data than ever, because a new network of temperature-sensitive floats has been laid across the oceans."

Towards the end of the report, Phillips refreshingly featured two soundbites from a climate change skeptic, who advised a measured response to the issue:

MARK PHILLIPS (off-camera): Does this remove the sense of urgency?

BENNY PEISER, GLOBAL WARMING POLICY FOUNDATION: It has already.

PHILLIPS (voice-over): For Benny Peiser, who heads a climate policy think tank, the world doesn't need crippling cuts in fossil fuel use. It needs to build more flood barriers, like this one, to protect against the rising sea levels that melting polar ice and glaciers will cause.

PHILLIPS (off-camera): Are you saying that the measures that are being proposed – for the quite significant reduction in the production of greenhouse gases – are unrealistic; unreachable; wrong? What are you saying?

PEISER: They are unrealistic and unreachable.

PHILLIPS (voice-over): And whatever happens to the temperature, the climate change debate is about to heat up.

But the journalist didn't mention once during the segment how the Sun contributes to the climate issue. Earlier in 2013, scientists revealed that the solar maximum – the high point in the Sun's regular 11-year cycle of eruptive activity – is "shaping up to be the weakest in 100 years and the next one could be even more quiescent".

However, this latest report is certainly a change for Phillips. Back in December 2009, he went so far to stand in water up to his neck, and then went fully underwater to hype the doomsday scenario of sea level rise.

The full transcript of Mark Phillips' report from Thursday's CBS Evening News:

SCOTT PELLEY: Now to news in science – scientists working with the United Nations have been poring over data on climate and greenhouse gases. Their report is due out tomorrow. But anyone expecting it to show steadily-rising air temperatures could be in for a surprise.

Here's Mark Phillips.

MARK PHILLIPS (voice-over): Another inconvenient truth has emerged on the way to the apocalypse. The new U.N. Report on climate change is expected to blame man-made greenhouse gases more than ever for global warming. But there's a problem. The global atmosphere hasn't been warming lately.

For decades, as the amount of carbon dioxide being few spewed into the atmosphere went up – the top line on this graph – average temperatures – the squiggly bottom line – more or less followed. But since 1998, while the amount of greenhouse gases continued to rise, the air temperature hasn't.

Why not? Brian King of Britain's National Oceanographic (sic) Center told us science thinks the extra heat has gone into the oceans.

BRIAN KING, NATIONAL OCEANOGRAPHY CENTER: The ocean is warming significantly.

PHILLIPS: Still?

KING: Still – and almost each year is warmer than the previous year. And certainly, each decade is warmer than the previous decade.

PHILLIPS: And scientists are surer of their data than ever, because a new network of temperature-sensitive floats has been laid across the oceans. And every 10 days, each of the 3,000 buoys reports its findings via satellite.

PHILLIPS (on-camera): However the apparent pause in global warming is explained, it makes the task for the world's majority of climate scientists – who urge urgent action now – more difficult. For the skeptics, it's ammunition.

PHILLIPS (off-camera): Does this remove the sense of urgency?

BENNY PEISER, GLOBAL WARMING POLICY FOUNDATION: It has already.

PHILLIPS (voice-over): For Benny Peiser, who heads a climate policy think tank, the world doesn't need crippling cuts in fossil fuel use. It needs to build more flood barriers, like this one, to protect against the rising sea levels that melting polar ice and glaciers will cause.

PHILLIPS (off-camera): Are you saying that the measures that are being proposed – for the quite significant reduction in the production of greenhouse gases – are unrealistic; unreachable; wrong? What are you saying?

PEISER: They are unrealistic and unreachable.

PHILLIPS (voice-over): And whatever happens to the temperature, the climate change debate is about to heat up. Mark Phillips, CBS News, London.

— Matthew Balan is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Matthew Balan on Twitter.