Kathryn and James Murdoch Speak Out Against News Corp Climate Coverage

Eloise Marshall
January 15, 2020

An unnamed News Corp executive told the Daily Beast that the couple is "pissing inside the tent".

News Corp has declined to respond to James Murdoch's criticism, referring instead to an editorial in the Australian newspaper four days ago, that said in part that social media is driving a campaign of outrage about an alleged right wing conspiracy of climate denialism.

"Kathryn and James' views on climate are well established and their frustration with some of the News Corp and Fox coverage of the topic is also well known", the pair told U.S. news website The Daily Beast.

Rupert Murdoch has described himself as a climate sceptic.

In some cases, Murdoch papers will effectively work to "pull into line" conservative politicians who express a desire to implement stronger climate change policies, as was the case for NSW energy minister Matt Kean, who was the target of several critical articles within The Daily Telegraph and The Australian, following an address to the Smart Energy Conference that committed the state to stronger renewable energy and climate change ambition.

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Australian News Corp papers have recently come under fire for their coverage of the bushfire crisis, with worldwide media accusing them of pushing false narratives around arson and alleged Greens opposition to back-burning as the catalysts for the emergency. Lachlan, whose politics are more in line with the conservative family patriarch, took full control of Fox News parent company Fox Corp. a year ago. Critics of Murdoch, Cave wrote, are "increasingly connecting News Corp to the spread of misinformation and the government's lackluster response to the fires".

"It's evidence of how high tensions are within the family over climate change", he said.

In opinion pieces, some News Corp columnists have attacked the widely accepted science about climate change links to the blazes.

"News Corp stands by its coverage of the bushfires".

It's not just a family issue either, as James continues to serve on the News Corp board.

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