Our first Climate Change in the American Mind survey, conducted in 2008, revealed that TV weathercasters are highly trusted sources of information about global warming. We soon learned that weathercasters also have unparalleled access to the public, and superior science communication skills. These three factors, in combination, strongly suggested to us that TV weathercasters could become an important source of climate change education in communities across America.
Since 2009, with funding from the National Science Foundation – and in partnership with Climate Central, the American Meteorological Society, NASA, NOAA, and Yale – we have been exploring and helping develop the potential of TV weathercasters as local climate educators.
Beginning with a single weathercaster in 2010, our Climate Matters partnership now provides localized broadcast quality materials to more than 300 weathercasters nationwide, and is growing rapidly.
To get a feel for this program, watch this brief video produced by NOAA and meet WLTX (Columbia, SC) Chief Meteorologist Jim Gandy and News Director Marybeth Jacoby, the news team we partnered with to develop Climate Matters.
In this video you will meet more terrific TV weathercasters who are using Climate Matters materials to educate their viewers about the local impacts of climate change:
And in this video Bernadette Placky -- a former broadcast meteorologist who now runs the Climate Matters program for our partner Climate Central -- explains how our national parks are threatened by climate change, and what they are doing about it.