The Weather Channel disavows co-founder's comments on climate change

Atlanta-based Weather Channel CEO David Kenny told staff in a note today that the network co-founder's comments to Fox News questioning climate change were not opinions reflected by the Weather Channel itself.

“Not only is the ice not melting, more polar bears are alive and happy today than we’ve had in 100 years,” John Coleman told Fox News host Megyn Kelly earlier this week. The  research behind climate change “is bad, bad science."

Coleman, 80 and a veteran weatherman, helped start the Weather Channel when it debuted in 1981. He has disavowed climate change for many years, calling it a "scam."

TVNewser obtained Kenny's memo:

This week, several people inside and outside our company have asked about the comments John Coleman, a co-founder of The Weather Channel, has made in the media denying the science around climate change. Mr. Coleman does have a place in our company’s history, and we appreciate the contributions he made more than 30 years ago. However, we want to be clear: John Coleman is no longer affiliated with our company, and his opinions do not represent The Weather Company. We regret any confusion this has caused.

Across our platforms we explain clearly that we support the consensus science on climate change as shown by the IPCC and the 2014 National Climate Assessment. We are proud of our scientists who accurately represent the science in their writing, research and coverage. Of course, the work of Dr. Jeff Masters and Stu Ostro come to mind first. Just by reading their blogs or hearing them speak on the topic, you understand why it is so important for us to continue reporting on climate on all of our platforms.

For those asking for more or a place to point people, I recommend this Weather Underground article on climate change or The Weather Channel position statement. This is also in accordance with the United States military’s view on its importance for our national security. In addition, if you have not seen our recent “2050 video” produced in conjunction with the United Nations and WMO, it is a great example of how we can bring science to life for our viewers.

 The Weather Channel has a long-standing statement on its site about global warming going back to 2007 you can read here.

Link up with me at my Twitter and Facebook pages .

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.

About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.