In its newest special “Behind Obama's Green Agenda,” Fox News turned to right-wing radio host Mark Levin to explain global warming, rather than quoting a single scientist. The vast majority of scientists say that our increased emissions of greenhouse gases are causing global warming, but Levin declared that we do not need to worry about these emissions because “carbon dioxide is what we exhale, carbon dioxide is necessary for plants.”
Fox identified Levin as the co-founder of the Landmark Legal Foundation and suggested he is an expert on the Environmental Protection Agency, which he said “has many of the attributes of the old Soviet system.” But Levin is better known for his rants as a right-wing radio talk show host than for his expertise on environmental issues.
The host of the hourlong special, Bret Baier, is often viewed as one of the more credible news anchors at Fox News. But consistent with previous directions from Fox News' Washington Managing Editor, Baier cast doubt on the science of climate change:
[A]n all-out effort to lower the temperature of the planet, assuming global warming is a real problem that humans can reverse, would surely be the most complicated and expensive undertaking in human history.
Baier warned that the EPA may implement cap-and-trade, which he called a “massive tax,” citing an industry group estimate that it could cost “more than a half a trillion dollars a year -- trillion, with a T.” In reality, the EPA has acted modestly after the Supreme Court ruled that greenhouse gases “fit well” within the definition of a pollutant, as additional concentrations of them lead to an increase in average global temperatures that can increase certain extreme weather events, sea level rise and more. And as William Reilly, former EPA administrator under Ronald Reagan, told Baier, cap-and-trade was “hugely effective” in cleaning up sulfur dioxide pollution, and would also be a cost-effective way to address global warming, as conservatives used to acknowledge.