Robert M. Hager
Robert M. Hager, a correspondent in the Washington DC bureau of NBC News Network, has been a leader in covering global environmental issues on United States television, and in particular the issues of ozone depletion and global warming.
He has been notably courageous among TV commentators in linking weather and climate events to global warming, and has been a positive and important voice for the environment in the media. His reports, reaching millions of Americans daily on NBC's Evening News, the Today Show and the new MS/NBC Cable News station, have been factual, direct and forceful, always emphasizing a strong and sound environmental component.
As a good reporter, Hager believes that the facts must speak for themselves and those facts clearly point to a changing climate. He has been one of the few television voices alerting the American people to this major global environmental problem. In the past year, he has reported on major climactic events, such as Hurricane Mitch and the El Nino phenomenon. He related these intense storms to the threat of global warming - while US industry has campaigned against this view and most TV correspondents have largely ignored or downplayed the climate change issue.
He reported on the Bush Administration's attempts to deny the problem's existence and their efforts to support industry's views. Hager reported comprehensively on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scandals in the early 1980s when the EPA Administrator, under President Reagan, tried to dismantle much of the Agency's regulatory capacity. Ultimately, she was forced to resign. He covered the Love Canal, Times Beach and other toxic waste crises, such as the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant leak.
Every year, since the early 1970s, he has ranked in the top 10 among major TV network correspondents based on frequency of appearance on the evening news, ranking first in 1996 and 1997 and second in 1998. He won an Emmy Award in 1990, and in 1993 he was inducted into the Silver Circle Honor Society of journalists in Washington.