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Thank You, Rupert Murdoch, for Putting the Earth First!

Reported by Marie Therese - May 11, 2007 -

On Wednesday, Neil Cavuto made a very terse announcement that Rupert Murdoch has declared that News Corporation, parent company of FOX News Channel, will become "carbon neutral" by 2010, three years from now. I fully expected at least one segment on this topic would be scheduled on Thurday's Your World, Cavuto's nightly business show. However, Thursday's show turned out to be an almost non-stop discussion of the Fort Dix terrorist bust, including several guests who trashed the New York Times and others for daring to question some aspects of the FBI's investigative process. It's as if Murdoch's announcement never happened, which is a shame because Rupert Murdoch deserves a big round of applause for having the guts to take a stand opposed to that so clearly expressed by the majority of the pundits on FOX News Channel. It remains to be seen how FNC will handle this whole thing.

Murdoch's speech, delivererd May 9th at the Hudson Theatre in New York City, is a rip-snortin' endorsement of the notion of climate change. Since Murdoch is first and foremost a business man, you'll see that he clearly believes there is an emerging market for environment-related businesses.

Here's how the speech starts off:

RUPERT MURDOCH, May 9, 2007:

Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. This morning is the first time we have ever done a global event for all News Corp. employees, many of whom are joining us live by webcast. So I should say good morning, but to those of you who are watching: good afternoon, and good evening...

I'm here to tell you about a new initiative we're undertaking at News, one that will affect us all.

As many of you know, I grew up in Melbourne, Australia and the last few months and years have brought some changes there:

In Melbourne, 2006 was the 10th consecutive year with below average rainfall. And 2005 was the hottest year on record throughout Australia.

Australia is suffering its worst drought in 100 years.

Now, I realize we can't take just one year in one city or even one continent as proof that something unusual is happening. And I am no scientist.

But there are signs around the world, and I do know how to assess a risk.

Climate change poses clear, catastrophic threats. We may not agree on the extent, but we certainly can't afford the risk of inaction.

We must transform the way we use energy, and of course not only because of climate change...

When I look around the world today, I see continued dependence on oil from vulnerable regions... and oil money going to leaders of countries hostile to us. Then there's accelerating development in China, India and other developing economies that are reliant on fossil fuels.

But there are promising new technologies-- bio-fuels, solar and wind power, cleaner coal.

And we all hear a demand from the public-- our audiences-- for governments and businesses to involve them in solving our energy challenge.

Climate change and energy use are global problems-- News Corp is a global company.

Our operations affect the environment all over the world.

Our audiences-- hundreds of millions of people on five continents-- care about this issue. Three quarters of the American public believes climate change is a serious problem, and in many other countries, developed and developing, the numbers are even higher.

And as many companies have already learned, acting on this issue is simply good business.

Reducing our use of energy reduces costs.

Inviting our employees to be active on this issue helps us recruit and retain the world's best.

For us, as a media company-- this is a chance to deepen our relationships with our viewers, readers, and web users.

He goes on to outline specific things all of the News Corporation companies will do to implement his plan.

MURDOCH: We're not a manufacturer, or an airline, but we do use energy. Printing and publishing newspapers, producing films, broadcasting television signals, operating 24-hour newsrooms. It all adds carbon to the atmosphere.

Our first step was to measure our emissions of greenhouse gases-- our carbon footprint.

Our carbon footprint last year was 641,150 tons. This includes the electricity used in all our operations globally, and any fuels we burned.

Our analysis was independently verified and, today, we are reporting these figures to the public.

We could make a difference just by holding our emissions steady as our businesses continue to grow. But that doesn't seem to be enough: we want to go all the way to zero.

Today, I am announcing our intention to be carbon neutral, across all our businesses, by 2010.

BSkyB has already done this. When all of News Corporation becomes carbon neutral it will have the same impact as turning off the electricity in the city of London for five full days.

Some of our businesses use more energy than others, but our strategy everywhere is the same... first, reduce our use of energy as much as possible. Then, switch to renewable sources of power where it makes economic sense...

And, over time, as a last resort, offset the emissions we can't avoid.

While he acknowledges that there are some people who will not easily make the shift to his new policies, he offers incentives for them to do so:

MURDOCH: Now there will always be journalists... including some of ours... who are skeptical, which is natural and healthy. But the debate is shifting from whether climate change is really happening to how to solve it. And when so many of the solutions make sense for us as a business, it is clear that we should take action not only as a matter of public responsibility, but because we stand to benefit.

This all begins with you, our employees. As we reduce our company's carbon footprint, we will help you to reduce your own.

I've started myself-- I bought a hybrid car a few months ago-- and of course for each of us there will be some changes we can make, and other changes we can't.

But we shouldn't let what we can't do stop us from doing what we can.

We have launched Cool Change, our campaign to communicate with you on this issue, including a website where you can contribute ideas, and be rewarded for your efforts.

Fox has recently announced a new benefit it is offering its employees: a financial incentive to buy or lease a hybrid car. We now plan to roll this out to other News Corporation businesses.

I ask each of you to think about how this effort affects your own job, because I am certain it does.

As you discover new ways to save money or connect with your audiences or business partners, you will realize: finding a way to act on climate change is not only good for the planet, and not only good for our business, it will be good for your career.

And it will be great for attracting new talent-- dynamic, creative, engaged people who think about the future, not one year ahead, but a generation ahead-- exactly the kind of people we need for our company to thrive.

Wow! News Corporation's top cat has put virtually all of FOX News' management and hosts between a rock and a hard place. There is not much wiggle room in this speech. Murdoch clearly endorses the idea that man is contributing to global warming.

As Steve Doocy would say "This is huuu-ge!"

We would like to applaud Mr. Murdoch's willingness to accept the evidence of the majority of climate scientists. He deserves a big shout out for having the guts to take this step.

We often ask our readers to write to protest something or other. This time why not contact News Corporation and thank them for taking this stand on behalf of the planet we all share?

If you are not a shareholder in News Corporation, contact:

Teri Everett, Senior Vice President
Corporate Affairs & Communications
Phone: 310-369-2929
E-Mail: teverett@newscorp.com

For those of you who might hold stock in the company, please contact either or both of the following:

Reed Nolte, Senior Vice President
Investor Relations
Phone: 212-852-7092
Fax: 212-852-7145
E-Mail: rnolte@newscorp.com

Craig Felenstein, Vice President
Investor Relations
Phone: 212-852-7084
Fax: 212-852-7145
E-Mail: cfelenstein@newscorp.com