New Climate Central writer tries to connect climate and extreme weather with love of bigger destructive storms

Bernadette_Woods

Bernadette Woods at WJZ. Click to enlarge Image: from WJZ-TV with humorous embellishment by Anthony

From the weather is not climate unless we say it is department comes this disturbing admission. From Tom Nelson, an illustration of the sort of defective thinking we see in some people who think climate and weather have no distinction:

Meteorologist Bernadette Woods, a Penn state grad, heads to Climate Central, who she says is “trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening”

Meteorologist Bernadette Woods says she is leaving WJZ-TV – baltimoresun.com

WJZ meteorologist Bernadette Woods is leaving the CBS-owned station to join a non-profit firm in New Jersey focused on climate change, she said Wednesday night.



Woods described Climate Central as a “non-profit, non-lobbying company which deals with climate information, basically trying to educate the public” on climate change.

“There’s so much misinformation out there, that this company started in an effort to try and get good information to the public,” she said.”They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening. That’s really exciting for me, because I do love the science.”

Woods, a Penn State graduate with a B.S. in meteorology, earned her Television Seal of Approval through the American Meteorological Society in 2004.

“Oh, I’m a weather geek, no doubt about it,” she said laughing. “The bigger the storm, the better.”

[(Nelson:)Wait, so she laughs about tragic storms that kill and injure people, including children?  To her, bigger storms are “better”?]

Like some storm chasers, some TV weather types get an adrenaline rush from severe weather events. I was once that way when I was young and stupid, until one day I was sent into the field to cover a tornado damage story, and I saw firsthand the loss of people hit by the storm.

As I’m sure Ms. Woods will eventually read this story, I direct her this history on technology, media, and severe weather to help her gain some perspective.

UPDATE: I erred in the original headline thinking she was a student of Dr. Mann. My information on the date Mann joined PSU (2004) was incorrect, it was actually 2005. Thus I have edited the headline and first sentence to correct my error – Anthony

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55 thoughts on “New Climate Central writer tries to connect climate and extreme weather with love of bigger destructive storms

  1. Oh, they KNOW better.

    But they’re activists. It’s about what will SELL, and they’ve decided this is what will sell to the low-information citizen.

    They’re dishonest to the core, and all we can really hope is for a major schism in the warmist community over this sort of misconduct.

  2. I disagree with the focus.
    We don’t upbraid Civil War enthusiasts on the basis that so many were killed, therefore there is something wrong with having an interest, even enjoyment in the study of in the subject.
    There’s nothing wrong with interest in large storms, even if they kill people.
    Let’s focus on the misguided notion of this person trying to combat misinformation by adding to the stock.

    Phil (The other one)

  3. Maybe she can also help out by choosing cute storm names for the entertainment-oriented “Weather Channel” (which was formerly a popular and well-regarded public information cable channel and website for the weather).

  4. “trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening.”

    Isn’t climate the average of all weather, extremes included?

    She needs to go back to school.

  5. Big difference in studying history and historical events and wanting violent powerful dangerous things to happen in the future.
    I’m a ham radio operator and just attended Skywarn again. There is a difference in storm spotting and storm chasing. I have never met a ham that drools and salivates when a weather net is activated.
    And not a single meteorologist from any of the three stations that attended Skywarn, or any hams, or any National Weather Service personnel made the slightest hint that any storm or weather event is linked or could be linked to any changes in the climate.

  6. How can they even consider a “meteorologist” with such a tainted and controversial background? Beats the heck out of me.

  7. Fascination at the raw power of our atmosphere is nothing to be ashamed of. “Weather weenies” don’t get drawn into Meteorology because each day is clear and 85. Regardless of any other point in the article, a person expressing a desire to observe weather extremes is not the same as one wishing to see people hurt or killed. Not even close. Highlighting (and then expounding on) that unfounded conclusion is misguided at best.

  8. I have to echo TheOtherPhil here, you know perfectly well that when she says bigger storms are “better” she means “more interesting to study”.

    I’m sure that virologists would say a new, rare, aggressive virus would be of professional interest to study but that doesn’t mean that they wish people to contract the virus.

    Are cancer scientists pro-cancer? It’s absurd.

    She studies big storms because she wants to be able to give people more warning to SAVE lives, the same way a virologist or cancer scientists do.

  9. “There’s so much misinformation out there, that this company started in an effort to try and get good information to the public,” she said.”They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening. That’s really exciting for me, because I do love the science.”

    This is GREAT! Now she can read the following “science” and let me know if it “misinformation”?

    Abstract – 2012
    Persistent non-solar forcing of Holocene storm dynamics in coastal sedimentary archives

    “We find that high storm activity occurred periodically with a frequency of about 1,500 years, closely related to cold and windy periods diagnosed earlier”

    http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ngeo1619.html#ref1

    Conclusion – 2011
    Long-term properties of annual maximum daily river discharge worldwide

    Analysis of trends and of aggregated time series on climatic (30-year) scale does not indicate consistent trends worldwide. Despite common perception, in general, the detected trends are more negative (less intense floods in most recent years) than positive. Similarly, Svensson et al. (2005) and Di Baldassarre et al. (2010) did not find systematical change neither in flood increasing or decreasing numbers nor change in flood magnitudes in their analysis.

    http://itia.ntua.gr/getfile/1128/2/documents/2011EGU_DailyDischargeMaxima_Pres.pdf

    Abstract – 2011
    Fluctuations in some climate parameters

    There is argument as to the extent to which there has been an increase over the past few decades in the frequency of the extremes of climatic parameters, such as temperature, storminess, precipitation, etc, an obvious point being that Global Warming might be responsible. Here we report results on those parameters of which we have had experience during the last few years: Global surface temperature, Cloud Cover and the MODIS Liquid Cloud Fraction. In no case we have found indications that fluctuations of these parameters have increased with time.

    http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jastp.2011.01.021

    Abstract – 2011
    The Twentieth Century Reanalysis Project

    It is anticipated that the 20CR dataset will be a valuable resource to the climate research community for both model validations and diagnostic studies. Some surprising results are already evident. For instance, the long-term trends of indices representing the North Atlantic Oscillation, the tropical Pacific Walker Circulation, and the Pacific–North American pattern are weak or non-existent over the full period of record. The long-term trends of zonally averaged precipitation minus evaporation also differ in character from those in climate model simulations of the twentieth century.

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/qj.776/full

    Abstract – 2012
    Changes in the variability of global land precipitation

    We report a near-zero temporal trend in global mean P. Unexpectedly we found a reduction in global land P variance over space and time that was due to a redistribution, where, on average, the dry became wetter while wet became drier.

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/pip/2012GL053369.shtml

    observations and perceptions are the key. She needs to read about the bad weather of the past and realise she’s still wet behind the ears.

  10. “Woods described Climate Central as a “non-profit, non-lobbying company which deals with climate information, basically trying to educate the public” on climate change.” So who, exactly, is paying her salary?

  11. Since it would appear that she graduated from PSU no later than 2004, and Mann started there in 2005, I fail to see how she could have been his student.

    REPLY: The word I had was that Mann started in 2004. I note none of the other issues bother you though, which is par for the course for your “anything goes” view of climate science on display here. – Anthony

  12. Dear Ms Woods:
    Can you tell me what caused the Great Colonial Hurricane of 1635? A Cat 4 storm that is considered to be the strongest ever to hit north of North Carolina, right in the middle of The Little Ice Age?

  13. Mann wasn’t hired until 2005, and there are over 3 dozen metrology profs (not instructors, professors) at PSU, so you could go your entire 4 years and not get him. At any rate PSU has one of the oldest and best Meteo programs in the country and bascially generated AccuWeather (based in State College) founded by Joel Meyers a PSU alum, which has, AFAIK, been pretty apolitical in the whole Global Warming deal. Mann, despite his giant Q ratings, is a tiny little piece of PSU.

  14. “There’s so much misinformation out there, that this company started in an effort to try and get good information to the public,” she said.

    So she will be promoting WUWT. Good. Just make sure she gives proper credit.
    /sarc

  15. A BS is meterology? The folks I know are either MS or Ph.Ds. And none of them believe in AGW. The only thing they stipulate is the CO2 level in the atmosphere.

    The Ph.D. does numerical modeling for a USAF contractor. Last time I talked with him he said the models still do not have the “resolution” to draw any definitive conclusions about anything that drives Earth’s climate. In short, he says, they still don’t know enough about the Earth-ocean-atmosphere interactions to say much of anything.

  16. I will point out that the “attitude” (the prejudices and privileges and grant money and research and the promises of future grant money) that HIRED Mann from University of Virginia into Penn State WAS the same that trained Wood, that graded Wood in her classes, that influenced Wood throughout the four (or more) years of her undergraduate time at Penn State.

    Now, we know that one of the primary “influences” or controls on Penn State is grant money and research funds – “grant-money-brought-into-the-university” is, after all, one the first things that Penn State puts on Mann’s “qualifications” for his position at Penn State. The millions for new research at Penn State into malaria spreading from global warming was declared just days before Mann was excused by the university’s “so-called” examination” into the Hockey Stick debacle.

    Thus, it is up to Wood to prove that she is not influenced by the extra money she is now getting by her promotion of CAGW extremism and her political power and influence!

    /sarchasm – that gaping whole between a liberal and the real world.

  17. The Bastardi’s are close friends with Bernie, she went to school here, was a gymnast that my wife coached and is a fine meteorologist. I suspect they need a polished TV person and they went to her. I do not believe Dr Mann was a teacher here when Bernie was in school, so I dont think that should be brought into the mix. Even if he was, I dont ever recall Bernie even mentioning Dr Mann once. While saddened by all this, lets make sure we all try our best to make sure she, and many like her, are exposed to the overwhelming evidence that counters all this nonsense, and not try to pile on with accusations that may not be true, or have nothing to do with it

    Thanks

    • @ Joe Bastardi. @KevinUK My information (2004 as date Mann joined PSU) was in error, and I’ve made a correction to the headline per your and others advice on the matter. Thanks to everyone for the corrections.

  18. Rattus is right, Mann started at PSU in 2005, she was not a student of Mann’s. You may want to change the title. While your at it, you may want to remove the (blatantly false and exaggerated) ad hominem attack on her “laugh[ing] about tragic storms that kill and injure people, including childern”, which many of the comments here have addressed.

    However, after that I’m not sure what you are left with…a piece about a person making a career change, I guess…

  19. Anthony,

    Mann’s CV can be seen by clicking on the following link

    http://www.meteo.psu.edu/holocene/public_html/Mann/about/cv/cv_hyper_new.htm

    It stays he as ‘Associate Professor, Pennsylvania State University, Department of Meteorology [joint appointments in Department of Geosciences and Earth and Environmental Systems Institute (EESI)]‘ from 2005 to 2009.

    It therefore looks like RN is correct and that its unlikely that Bernadette Woods (assuming she graduated from PSU in 2004 and didn’t then do a PhD at PSU etc) is a student of Michael Mann’s. Also based on the following link

    http://askville.amazon.com/Meteorologist-Bernadette-Woods-Forecast/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=35506098

    it would appear that she graduated before Micheal Mann arrived at PSU.

    Perhaps you should therefore now change the title and drop the ‘student of Micheel Mann….bit?

    KevinUK

  20. She.s the weather girl, and getting too old for that position. I watched her for many years, and, they’re all pretty much the same in Baltimore. She reports the weather as well or not well a everyone else. Nothing controversial about her.

  21. ” … Woods described Climate Central as a “non-profit, non-lobbying company which deals with climate information, basically trying to educate the public” on climate change. … ”

    Right. Meanwhile, I wrote an article about Climate Central having a rather decidedly different appearance last year:

    “PBS NewsHour: Climate Central a research organization; Sorry, no. They advocate solving man-caused global warming” http://junkscience.com/2012/03/23/pbs-newshour-climate-central-a-research-organization-sorry-no-they-advocate-solving-man-caused-global-warming/

  22. She is just another television professional in this tiresome Age of Hype. If you can use the words ‘extreme’ and ‘climate’ while describing storms then you are good at hype. She might watch a lot of NBA as they are the very best at hype.

  23. I’m sorry, but as an English speaker of english, this sentence says it all:

    ”They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening.”

    I understand that America has taken the language and modified it over time and, unlike Prof. Higgins, I have no problem with that. But surely the phrasing above just screams “airhead” even in American? Does she also want to work with small animals and furry children?

  24. “They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening. That’s really exciting for me, because I do love the science.”

    So she admits they are still “trying” to make the connection between climate change and extreme weather but she already knows what’s happening. When you come to a definite conclusion before the facts are in, that’s not science. She doesn’t love science, she loves “the cause” and any propaganda that supports it.

  25. At least she came out of the closet. We all know what to expect from her; fomenting disaster and treating climate change as if it’s only a recent phenomenon, rather than a major factor in what helps spur adaptation and survival of the fittest.

  26. Lovely. In a check of the links I had within my article that I linked to in my comment above, I discovered that a page for ex-founding director of Climate Central Berrien Moore’s bio is missing three critical words that I quoted in my article. It appears that Mr Moore or someone may have scrubbed those from his U of OK bio page…………… but they still appear in several other places, still to his detriment when it comes to the portrayal of Climate Central as an unbiased organization.

    So, I placed an author’s update to my piece noting that problem. What part of “what has been seen on the internet cannot be unseen” does our AGW promoter friends not understand?

    PBS NewsHour: Climate Central a “research organization”; Sorry, no. They advocate solving man-caused global warming [see 2/21/13 update ..] http://ow.ly/hVDB6

  27. Good career move. Moving from meteorology, where you can make big mistakes and still keep your job, to climate science, where you can be surreal and still keep your job.

  28. ”They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening”.

    The scandalous move from means to extremes hardly can be scientifically motivated because variance-increase does not follow from AGW, at most trivially as mean and variance are correlated in skewed distributions. Probably, the move has to do with hype. First, record setting comes from the world of sports and has no scientific value. It is based on arbitrary records and implies artificial dependence. Second, there are always extreme events somewhere. Walking behind them comes from TV programs like Tornado Watchers or programs about winners in a lottery. Third, people are (rightly) afraid of extremes making them the best items to scare them. It seems that this lady is at the right place at the right moment.

  29. As this numb-skull moves to a non profit; so should the attention of Congress: All the CAGW activists are hiding their activities under the form of tax evasion called non profits, maybe it’s time to end them. How much money do they cost the American tax payer every year?

  30. RCON; what a stupid argument to advance. As if she could care less about anything than her own career. Wake up, you’re living in a dream, a bad one.

  31. The solar physicists were confidently predicting that the start of our drift towards a mini-ice age in the middle of this century would commence with a change in the sun cycle in 2007.
    Right on cue we cooled as cycle 24 with it’s lower levels of sun spots ushered in more changeable weather…
    It should therefore come as no surprise that with more cold fronts to meet up with the warm fronts that from time to time we would experience stormy weather.
    Clearly this lady feels it is all to do with Earth’s number one plant food.
    What a waste of an education.

  32. Sound like Climate Central’s TV Mets program to “leverage the power of trusted messengers” is on track to roll out “first to 10 markets in 2012, 25 markets in 2013, and finally to 100 markets in the next five years, where we will be able to reach the majority of local news markets around country.”
    Bernadette must have answered the ad for “on-camera weathercaster or producer with AMS seal…. who is passionate about communicating …. how weather and climate are connected.”

    http://www.climatecentral.org/what-we-do/jobs/

    Still more positions open for Communications Director to:
    “Develop and implement a strategic positioning plan for the organization to build, grow, and protect the Climate Central brand.”
    “Build and maintain relationships with key reporters, producers, bloggers and writers, with a strong emphasis on generating local media coverage of Climate Central content around the nation.”

    Co-founder, NOAA Director Jane Lubchenco must be proud at the growth of this government and foundation funded organization on its mission to to “…make Americans feel the power of what’s really happening to the climate” ..objectively speaking, that is.

    http://ccimgs.s3.amazonaws.com/HeatIsOnReport.pdf

  33. they are trying to connect climate with extreme weather
    **********************************************************

    key phrase people, trying to connect.
    these people bug me.

  34. DavidG says:
    RCON; what a stupid argument to advance. As if she could care less about anything than her own career. Wake up, you’re living in a dream, a bad one.

    DavidG, you really missed the point of my argument. The point is not that she holds or doesn’t hold a moral high-ground for wanting to focus her attention away from day-to-day weather to more extreme weather events; the point is that she is not some destruction loving sadist for doing so.
    Perhaps you can wrap your head around this analogy more easily. Let’s say there is a general practitioner that leaves his job to study infectious diseases. When asked why, the person says “Because I just find studying infectious diseases fascinating ! The more deadly, the better!” It should be obvious that by “better” they mean “interesting” and that they certainly don’t mean that they relish in the fact that people die from these diseases.

    With any profession, people are usually attracted to the more extreme situations in the profession, as they find the “norm” is less interesting to study. Furthermore, the reason for this increase in interest is usually due to the fact that there is a greater ability to contribute positively to society when studying a subject that is more destructive to it.

    Now your resentment to this is based on you not agreeing that this career change with have a positive effect on society. That’s fine. However, what is not ok, is the attempt to demonize this individual by deliberately misrepresenting her statements. This was my point, which was repeated several times in the comments by other people.

    And Anthony, although I appreciate you removing the reference to Mann, you went from an erroneous title to a slanderous one, that’s not much of an improvement. You know perfectly well what she meant by her comment and yet you change the title to that, put in the emphasis and included Nelsons quote, in an attempt to discredit her.

    I don’t contest anything else in the article but you don’t have to use the smear tactics. I know there will be a flood of posts saying the other side does it as well and I would agree with that. However, it’s just as ugly and unnecessary when either side engages in this sort of behaviour, especially when it’s directed towards someone who is a relatively minor player in the debate. She doesn’t deserve this treatment and I can’t believe I’m being attacked by people like DavidG for thinking so…

  35. There is a fallacy about extreme weather that makes the MSM meme believable to low-information voters. People only remember the weather that they experience. In this the Information Age, we know so much more about the world, that untrained minds cannot shake off anecdotal evidence. These people do not know that the STATISTICAL EVIDENCE is the only issue, and do not even know when they are being fed a pack of lies. Go, Bernie, feed the lies, you have a big future….

  36. “There’s so much misinformation out there, that this company started in an effort to try and get good information to the public,”

    Starting a company, with what money?
    I suggest that Following The Money would be instructive here.

  37. “Woods described Climate Central as a “non-profit, non-lobbying company which deals with climate information…”

    *

    Has this been checked for accuracy? If they’re yelling “non-profit, non-lobbying,” they are probably the exact opposite – especially as they already are with “climate information”.

  38. Joe says:
    February 21, 2013 at 9:58 am
    “I’m sorry, but as an English speaker of english, this sentence says it all:

    ”They are trying to connect climate with extreme weather, because that’s a lot of what’s happening.”

    I understand that America has taken the language and modified it over time and, unlike Prof. Higgins, I have no problem with that. But surely the phrasing above just screams “airhead” even in American? Does she also want to work with small animals and furry children?”
    ============================================================
    You ROCK, Joe! ;o)

    P.S. You left out world peas and dolphins.

  39. “Woods, a Penn State graduate with a B.S. in meteorology..”

    Yup.. ;)

    I agree with her though, that big storms are exciting to watch, but I doubt she wants any associated destruction.

    Where I think all of us agree, is that “climate” in general, doesn’t specify local, regional, national, hemispheric or global. Extreme weather is usually dictated by local or regional conditions. The average of which becomes the climate in the area. Considering what Mt. Everest suffers every year, you can’t say that extreme weather is something new there at all. In fact, zero wind and sunshine on Everest is somewhat rare.

    She’s chasing unicorn farts because the media and associated warmist sites won’t present her with the historic information required.

  40. Forget the article…..read the comments!!!

    from ssabob at 5:01 PM February 21, 2013

    If humans can deforest and overuse large expanses of the earth’s land mass, drive many species to extinction, clog and poison rivers and lakes, exhaust fresh water supplies, overfish the seas, darken daytime sky, and light the night sky, how can you possibly believe they have no long-term net effect on climate? We live in an aquarium with too many inhabitants, too much light, and a clogged filter — yet some far too many will refuse to see it until it is beyond repair. Sadly, they choose to stick their head in the sand. We have lots of research, but very little common sense.

  41. Sorry, but this blog is going downhill greatly. It is becoming a nonstop bashing toward anyone that believes in man made global warming. You throw a fit over that “D word” you hate so much, but you have no problem turning this woman into some kind of big villain while have very little reason for doing so. This is nothing more than a senseless attack piece.

  42. I too am enjoying the comments! There are times when an article may have been taken out of the oven and served before it was done. This would be one of them. But it encourages the continued lively discussion on this web site and keeps me adding popcorn to my grocery list on a regular basis.

    From the sound of it, this weather reporter may have found her home! As in “village” and all that.

  43. Climate Central’s funders:

    http://www.climatecentral.org/about/funding/

    This non-profit organization is very top heavy with management. Ms Woods will fit quite nicely into the staff of this behemoth of special interests, too bad she is not Asian.
    It is great that so many young academics are gainfully employed in this “climate”; 5 science writers, 8 board members, 3 founders, 8 editors…totaling 33 people with 25 in apparent management rolls. Many are prolifically published…wow very impressive (sarc), but i could not find any primary research. I do confess that i was overwhelmed by the amount of info and went for a nap.

    http://www.climatecentral.org/what-we-do/people/

  44. Brian says February 22, 2013 at 1:23 am

    Sorry, but this blog is going downhill greatly. It is becoming a nonstop bashing toward anyone that believes in man made global warming. You throw a fit over that “D word” you hate so much, but you have no problem turning this woman into some kind of big villain while have very little reason for doing so. This is nothing more than a senseless attack piece.

    Where else in the world (and on what blog?) could one write the above and get it published – and not be looking forward to a ‘turn on the spit over a roaring fire’?

    .

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