It’s a 50-state project, and it’s the only thing you’ll see on Weather.com today — stories from New England to Hawaii on how people and ecosystems are adapting (or failing to adapt) to climate change and the new, extreme weather that comes with it.
Splashed across the front page in font that’s big enough for your partially blind grandmother: “There is no climate change debate.”
In fact, 97 percent of active climate scientists agree that it’s happening and that, unfortunately, we were the ones who caused it. But that’s not the only message Weather.com wants to send today.
“We wanted to go beyond presenting the science of climate change, which we do often, and show clear, specific consequences,” said Greg Gilderman, Weather.com’s editor in chief.
Gilderman told The Washington Post that the entire newsroom was passionate about this project, and it couldn’t be more appropriately timed after a year of extreme hurricanes, deadly wildfires and mudslides.
“People across the U.S. are quietly living the impacts of climate change,” Gilderman said. “The general public is searching for credible information on what is (but shouldn’t be) a contentious subject.”
In fact, Weather.com said it wanted to pay no attention to proving that climate change is happening and that it’s caused by our fossil fuel emissions, because that is a “manufactured debate.”
All 50 stories are part of the website’s series called “United States of Climate Change.” There are long-form stories, some investigations, videos and photos, rolled into one project to “communicate the reality of climate change across the country,” according to Weather.com, which is owned by IBM.
After all the reporting came together, Kevin Hayes, the website’s executive editor, had strong words.
“Those investigations and, ultimately, the project as a whole, came to much the same conclusion,” Hayes said in a news release. “America is unwilling to invest in mitigating the effects of climate change to the degree that future safety and stability requires.”
Among the headlines on Weather.com today:
West Virginia: Where Change is Most Denied, One Town Has Stopped Caring
Weather.com partnered with several news organizations for the project, including InsideClimate News, the Marshall Project and the Lens.