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As Storms Intensify, the Job of TV Weather Person Gets More Serious


After the remains of Hurricane Ida dumped historic levels of rain in the Northeast last year, ABC News’s chief meteorologist, Ginger Zee, stood in front of a collapsed bridge in New Jersey and gave viewers of “Good Morning America” a clear warning.“Human-induced” global warming does not cause storms like Hurricane Ida to happen in the first place, Ms. Zee said. But the warmer ocean temperatures do make them more destructive. “Extreme events that would have already happened,” she said, “are going to become more extreme.”The job of TV weather reporter is changing along with the weather.For decades, the men and women taking their best educated guess about the weather provided a respite from grim news reports, often playing a comic foil to the anchors. Before Willard Scott became the most prominent weatherman of the 1980s on NBC’s “Today Show,” he had played Ronald McDonald and Bozo the Clown.But Ms. Zee and her colleagues see themselves as tracking maybe …

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