Fox News' owner Rupert Murdoch has long been one of the media's last hold-outs against pushing climate change hysteria, until now.
Murdoch’s media empire in Australia — including his powerful newspapers and cable channel Sky News — has made an extraordinary flip-flop on climate change and will now embrace carbon reduction and zero emissions goals instead of trashing them.
The dramatic turnaround in editorial policy has garnered global media attention and comes as the media titan faces the wrath of left-leaning advertisers fed up with his media properties casting doubt on global warming.
Faced with the possible loss of millions of ad dollars in his newspapers, television stations, and websites, Murdoch is launching a companywide campaign to trumpet the benefits of a carbon-neutral economy, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, a respected Murdoch competitor which broke the story.
It’s also likely the new editorial policy will soon extend to Murdoch’s American properties, including his Fox News brands, The Wall Street Journal, and the New York Post.
For now, the decision effects all of News Corp Australia, which encompasses more than 150 newspapers, including The Australian and The Daily Telegraph, Sky News in Australia and New Zealand, and magazines, including Vogue and GQ.
For years, Murdoch’s Australian outlets have beaten the drum to deny climate change and ridicule it as a sham.
A study commissioned by the Sydney-based advocacy group GetUp! found that of more than 8,500 articles in Murdoch publications, nearly two-thirds of the editorials and opinion pieces were skeptical of climate change. Some 45% of the news articles were negative.
"Columnists have been accused of cherry-picking or misrepresenting data or statements from scientists," The Guardian, a British newspaper, reported on Thursday.
Murdoch’s Australian properties will reportedly become advocates for the world’s leading economies to hit net zero emissions by the year 2050. Conservative anti-climate change commentators won’t be muzzled, but will be "limited," the Morning Herald said.
The pro-global warming campaign will begin next month, timed to an upcoming international climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland.
According to the Morning Herald, the conservative media czar "has faced growing international condemnation and pressure from advertisers over its editorial stance on climate change."
The newspaper said Murdoch’s empire in Australia has "attacked various federal government efforts to reduce emissions" since 2007.
The new direction for News Corp Australia also may have been influenced by the youngest son of the 90-year-old tycoon.
In 2019, as deadly bushfires raged through Australia, James Murdoch denounced the company’s "ongoing denial" of climate change. James’ disgust even led him to quit the News Corp’s board of directors.
The Financial Times says that James Murdoch has indicated that when his father, now 90, passes, he and sisters will control the family trust and plan to move Fox News away from conservative politics and make it into an establishment media brand.
News Corp did not respond to calls for comment from the Morning Herald or The Guardian.
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