The slant of the program was to show that the decline in the public's concern about climate change was largely due to organised political activy paid for by various right wing pressure groups.This effort could not have succeded had the world warmed as predicted by the IPCC and the ecoleft environmentalists. The real earth has been in a cooling phase since about 2003.
Because of the Urban Heat Island effect and the thermal inertia of the oceans Sea Surface Temperatures are the best measure of global trends. These show that the global warming trend ended in about 2003. There has been no net warming since 1997 since when CO2 has risen 8.5% with no global temperature increase. Since 2003 the trend is negative. The current decline in the solar magnetic field strength is so marked as to suggest a possible coming Maunder Minimum (Little Ice Age) and the phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation suggests a likely 20 - 30 year cooling phase. For the next 30 years or so cooling is more likely than warming .Beyond that we know too little to make any actionable predictions.A colder dryer earth would,however be much more harmful to world food production than a warmer wetter one.
Any journalist or TV producer interested in the facts should have done due diligence because all the basic data is easily available on the web. Instead you rely on presenting the opinion of advocates of the competing viewpoints but continually kept emphasising the statistically ridiculous notion of a 97% consensus for AGW.
Clearly Frontline did no due diligence on this nonsense.
Lawrence Solomon said:
"This number will prove a new embarrassment to the pundits and press who use it. The number stems from a 2008 master’s thesis by student Maggie Kendall Zimmerman at the University of Illinois, under the guidance of Peter Doran, an associate professor of Earth and environmental sciences. The two researchers obtained their results by conducting a survey of 10,257 Earth scientists. The survey results must have deeply disappointed the researchers — in the end, they chose to highlight the views of a subgroup of just 77 scientists, 75 of whom thought humans contributed to climate change. The ratio 75/77 produces the 97% figure that pundits now tout."
for a full discussion see http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/01/03/lawrence-solomon-97-cooked-stats/
There is a real need for a reputable news organisation - Frontline? to undertake a truly objective analysis of the current state of what we know about climate science - based on the empirical data and not on the political propaganda productions of the IPCC