DISINFO: Climate activists and complicit media manipulate scientific data to impose green dictatorship
  • Outlet: RT English (archived)*
  • Date of publication: September 06, 2019
  • Outlet language(s): English
  • Reported in: Issue 163
  • Countries / regions discussed: Brazil, US
Mainstream media Climate Propaganda

DISINFO: Climate activists and complicit media manipulate scientific data to impose green dictatorship


Climate activists, world leaders, and the complicit Western media have been quick to link the ongoing Amazon wildfires to man-made climate change and the apocalyptic environmental consequences of human activity. They have even blamed the pro-industrial policies of Brazilian President Bolsonaro for accelerating the Amazon’s demise. Although studies show that the global occurrence of wildfires is dropping and that human activity has actually helped offset their impact on global climate, environmental campaigners and politicians continue to insist that only the imposition of a benevolent green dictatorship can save our planet from destruction. The Green New Deal, for instance, calls for the abolition of all air travel and stipulates government-overseen wealth redistribution programs beyond anything the communists of the 20th century could dream of.


The story cherry-picks data and quotes to undermine the overwhelming scientific consensus on the causes and impact of global warming, and to downplay the gravity of what every country in the world recognizes as an "urgent threat" (p. 1). Deforestation of the Amazon has accelerated by 20 percent in the past year alone, with experts attributing uncontrolled logging and land invasion in the region to President Bolsonaro's "pro-industrial" policies. The report cites two NASA studies to support its claim that human activity somehow moderates the effects of wildfires on global climate. The first one does not mention a decrease in Amazon wildfires -- only those in the African savanna -- and makes it clear that the lower incidence of wildfires in that region is a negative phenomenon: "Fewer and smaller fires on the savanna mean that there are more trees and shrubs instead of open grasslands. This is a significant change in habitat for the region’s iconic mammals like elephants, rhinoceroses, and lions. 'Humans are interrupting the ancient, natural cycle of burning and regrowth in these areas.'" The report then cites the second study: "The regrowth of vegetation or the creation of charcoal typically recaptures all of the carbon within months or years," but conveniently omits the very next sentence which contradicts RT's claim: "However, when fires permanently remove trees or burn through peat (a carbon-rich fuel that can take centuries to form), little carbon is recaptured and the atmosphere sees a net increase in CO2. That is why outbreaks of fire in countries with large amounts of peat, such as Indonesia, have an outsized effect on global climate." See here for our debunk of another RT story on wildfires and climate change. The US House of Representatives resolution proposing the creation of a "Green New Deal" does not address air travel at all, let alone advocate its abolition. In fact, the only mention of any travel in the document is a general call to invest in zero-emission vehicle manufacturing and high-speed rail (p. 8). Similarly, the resolution contains a descriptive (rather than prescriptive) statement about the "racial wealth divide" in the United States (p. 3) but does not envisage any wealth redistribution programs, "communist" or otherwise.


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Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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