Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace sent a message yesterday when he made a 12-minute discussion with Bill Gates about combating climate change, and also highlighted the right-wing effort to blame green energy for the power failures in Texas last week, the top interview of the show.
Gates has a new book out, “How to Avoid A Climate Disaster.” It couldn’t be more timely given the Texas power catastrophe last week. It also implicitly contradicts Fox’s “blame green energy for the outage” messaging lies.
Wallace got right to the point in his introduction:
WALLACE: The deep freeze in Texas and the breakdown in the state’s power grid have renewed questions about climate change and how we produce the energy we need.
Wallace played a clip of Texas’ Governor Greg Abbott blaming the power outage on green energy, from the Tuesday night Hannity show. Then he allowed Gates to thoroughly debunk the claim and explain the truth.
GATES: Well, it's not at all true. The failure to weatherize some of the nuclear sensors, the natural gas plants, and even some of the wind are responsible for their power shortages. And the wind is a tiny part of it.
It was mostly the thermal generators that went offline, because they haven't been weatherized.
Obviously, wind works in North Dakota, it works in Alaska. We know how to weatherize wind turbines.
The wind does come and go, but what was shut down, the vast majority, is thermal plants here.
So, you know, there is a reliability issue that will have to design the system, including more transmission.You know, Texas over time, will want to connect up, so that when it does get shortages, it's able to draw on other parts of the country.
Wallace didn’t mention how his colleagues have feverishly promoted the lie. But it was hard to miss Wallace's attempt to distance himself, especially after the next exchange.
WALLACE: As you know, a lot of people here at Fox News, that watch us, question whether climate change is real and how much of it is man-made, and they also question - whether it’s heat or freezing cold, whether it’s floods or drought that it’s all climate change. So, make your best case to the folks who this past week have been freezing in Texas.
GATES: The change in the wind patterns is allowing those cold fronts to come down from Canada more often. There’s a pattern of wind that, as it gets warmer, that breaks down. There’s no doubt that we’re putting CO2 into the atmosphere, there’s no doubt that that increases temperatures and that affects the weather.
And so, the ill effects, whether it’s farming in Texas being changed or wildfires or coral reefs dying off, there’s super-hard evidence that oceans rising. I do think it’s fair that people have different views on the tactics to deal with climate change. In fact, having both parties thinking about that is going to be very important as we go forward. …
It’s great to see that particularly young Republicans are joining in and saying that this is something they care about beyond their own individual success. Morally, preserving these ecosystems, allowing a livable planet, they are about that.
From there, the two moved on to specifics of mitigating or reversing climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic and social media.
You can watch Wallace and Fox stick a toe in the 21st century below, from the February 21, 2021 Fox News Sunday.
If Wrinkled Rupert and his compliant son, to whom the almighty dollar outweighs everything else, have any sense at all, they will try to seize the moderate right position. At least, I hope so.