Shel Winkley, meteorologist at KBTX television station, in Bryan–College Station, TX, explains how Climate Central’s materials add value to his work: "Climate Central’s materials have been enhancing my work—and my connection with viewers—since 2014.
"We aired a report in July 2021 about urban heat islands—what they mean, and their impact on our local cities of Bryan, and College Station, TX. We’d referenced urban heat islands before, but this was our first in-depth focus on the issue. The report featured Climate Central graphics showing that, on average, our summer temperatures in Bryan and College Station run about 6 degrees hotter than in suburban neighborhoods or more rural parts of our area.
"The impact was significant. A few months after our on-air report and the accompanying web story, the City of College Station, in response, issued a formal plan for new guidelines on new construction within the city. The new plan actually included the same Climate Central graphics we’d used in our July report! The city manager presented this plan to the city council, which approved it. It was great to see the impact of our story, which was clearly enhanced by the information we received from Climate Central.
"I particularly like the local relevance of Climate Central’s materials and graphics—our viewers can easily understand and relate to them. I could try spending a lot of time crunching the numbers myself, but knowing that professionals at Climate Central have already done that work in a rigorous manner allows me to use the information with confidence— so I can focus on the many other things in my busy schedule."
Read more about how meteorologists like Shel are tackling climate reporting: The One Group of People Americans Actually Trust on Climate Science (The Atlantic)