Fox News host Bill Hemmer falsely claimed there were no major hurricanes in 2014, during a segment criticizing action on climate change. But just one day earlier, Fox News correctly reported that two major hurricanes formed last year.
Hemmer introduced a segment on the May 28 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom by noting that President Obama was about to “get an update on the upcoming hurricane season” from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Hurricane Center. Hemmer then declared: “Three major storms predicted this year. They predicted a lot last year. We got zero.”
But on May 27, Fox News' Phil Keating noted that NOAA's 2014 forecast was actually “spot on the money.” The agency predicted that one or two major hurricanes would form in 2014, and they were right: Hurricanes Edouard and Gonzalo were both classified as “major hurricanes.” During the segment, Fox News even provided this helpful graphic:
Climate change deniers often tout a supposed “hurricane drought” to dismiss the notion that climate change is fueling more extreme weather. Hemmer used his false claim about hurricanes to segue into an interview with Fox News contributor Stuart Varney, who praised ExxonMobil for “pushing back on the climate change activists” by refusing to add climate change experts to its board.
President Obama visited the National Hurricane Center in Florida on May 28 to receive its hurricane briefing in person, and to discuss how climate change is linked to worsening storms. During the visit, Obama stated: “The best climate scientists in the world are telling us that extreme weather events like hurricanes are likely to become more powerful. When you combine stronger storms with rising seas, that's a recipe for more devastating floods.”