To be an effective forecaster, a broadcast meteorologist has to be a scientist. And because it’s TV, she or he also has to be likable and trustworthy. Greg Fishel of WRAL is all of those things. He also used to be a global warming denier. Now, he admits he was wrong. Fishel changed his mind about climate change after putting aside his politics and examining the science. Now, he’s an equally passionate convert, and recently expressed it again on Facebook.

Angeli Wright/Asheville Citizen-Times

Early voting is underway in the election for Asheville's city council.  The primary election whittled the race down to six candidates.  They're now vying for three open seats on the council in the November 3rd general election.  WCQS reporters David Hurand and Jeremy Loeb interviewed all six.  Their full comments are posted below in the order in which they aired.

NOAA: September 2015 Hottest Ever Recorded

Oct 27, 2015

A new report from NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information based in Asheville finds September of 2015 was the hottest September ever recorded.  Thomas Karl, the center's director, says the earth continues to warm and the evidence overwhelmingly points to human beings as the cause, and specifically the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. 

Records have been kept since 1880.  From NOAA's press release:

Tony Kiss
Asheville Citizen-Times

Another weekend has rolled around and Tony Kiss drops  by for a look at some of what's happening in Western North Carolina.  Tony Bennett performs tonight (Friday 10/23) at Harrah's Cherokee Casino.  The film Steve Jobs, and the new film starring Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies are now available on the big screen.

Jeremy Loeb/WCQS

Asheville city council candidate Brian Haynes defended his son and campaign manager, who is facing felony drug charges.  Austin Haynes was reported to have been arrested and charged with possession of around six pounds of marijuana.  The candidate told WCQS he knew that his son's arrest could become public during the campaign.  He declined to comment on the specific charges, but said he loves his son and is proud of him.  Haynes said he wouldn't have wanted anyone else to be his campaign manager, calling his son one of the most socially conscious people he knew.  He says he hopes voters wo

Legislative Wrap: Rep. Susan Fisher

Oct 22, 2015
Jeremy Loeb/WCQS

WCQS has been sitting down with area lawmakers in the weeks since the legislature wrapped up its long session.  Today, we talk with Democratic Rep. Susan Fisher of Buncombe County.  Fisher says the Republican-dominated legislature did nothing for the ordinary citizen while it gave tax cuts to the very wealthy.  Our full conversation is above.  You can find some highlights of the conversation below.

Senate President Pro-Tem Phil Berger says the Medicaid overhaul North Carolina lawmakers approved last month will contain the cost of the publicly funded health insurance program and improve the quality of service patients receive. Berger talks with WUNC reporter Jorge Valencia.

Cone Health Foundation (

North Carolina's Republican-dominated legislature has so far refused to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.  It's already been noted by the North Carolina Institute of Medicine that not expanding Medicaid is costing around 500,000 state residents coverage.  Now a new report from the Center for Health Policy Re

Legislative Wrap: Rep. Josh Dobson

Oct 19, 2015
Jeremy Loeb/WCQS

As part of a series of conversations with mountain area lawmakers about the recently-completed legislative session, we sat down with Josh Dobson, a Republican state House member representing Avery, McDowell, and Mitchell counties.  Dobson is serving his first full term, after being appointed to his seat and then winning re-election.  In our conversation, Dobson highlighted his goals of preserving quality public education and healthcare in western North Carolina.  He also spoke a

Its another great weekend for music and festivals in Western North Carolina. The 41st LEAF Festival takes place this weekend in Black Mountain (10/15-18).  The Festival is sold out.  One of the areas major contributor to the development of Western North Carolina's music scene,  Andy Cohen performs at White Horse Black Mountain tonight (10/16).  The great Patty Griffin will take the stage at the Orange Peel Saturday (10/17).