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The media still barely communicates the urgency of the climate crisis | Mark Heartsguard and Kyle Pope

TaTV newsman Bill Moyers tells us that prominent U.S. broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow at the time insisted on reporting Germany’s invasion of Poland in 1939. Mallow’s bosses at .CBS News had other priorities. They ordered Mallow’s reporters to cover dance competitions in Hamburg, Paris, and London, explaining that Americans need good news. Mallow wouldn’t do that. He told his colleagues, “Probably Kubi. He sent a correspondent to the border between Germany and Poland. They witnessed Hitler’s tanks and troops plunge into Poland just in time. Suddenly Europe was in a state of war. Americans knew it because journalists, one of America’s most influential news outlets, worked unconventionally.

Today, all humanity is under attack from the overheated Earth, and too many newsrooms tend to pick up the equivalent of today’s dance competitions. A record heat wave in 2020. And the storm confirmed what scientists had long predicted. Climate change is ongoing and threatened by unparalleled catastrophes. Also, carbon dioxide traps heat in the atmosphere for centuries, so temperature rises and their effects are still in their infancy.As a scientist Said When the wildfire turned orange in San Francisco last September, “we’ll look back 10 years, and certainly 20 years later, and say,’2020 was crazy but lonely.'”

Some major newspapers are paying attention. However, most news reports continue to downplay the story of climate change, especially on television, which they consider to be too complex, depressing, or controversial. Last month, we called on the world’s press to promise to treat climate change as what scientists call an emergency. Their reaction was depressing.

We created Covering Climate Now in April 2019 to help break the media’s climate silence. Bill Moyers talked about Mallow at our founding meeting. Since then, Covering Climate Now has grown into a consortium of hundreds of news media with a combined total of about 2 billion people, and climate coverage across the media has improved significantly.

However, the coverage is not yet sufficient. To inform viewers that civilization is literally under attack, the press has taken up more articles on climate, and more articles, especially climate change in meteorology, economics, politics, and other areas of life. You should run an article about how it affects you. It is the top of the homepage and broadcast, not the bottom. News reports need to present climate change as an imminent and deadly threat and communicate it more clearly.

This message is muted at best today and the results are predictable. In the United States, only 26% of the population is “warning” about climate change, according to a poll analyzed by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication (a member of the CCNow Consortium). One reason? Less than a quarter of people hear about climate change in the media at least once a month.

Good journalism leads the conversation, and certainly there’s a lot of climate news these days that’s worth covering. Last week, in two surprising developments, a Dutch court ordered the Royal Dutch Shell Oil Company to reduce its and its customers’ greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030, in accordance with the Paris Agreement. Chevron rebelled against management’s refusal to take strong climate change measures. A week ago, the International Energy Agency declared that the development of all new fossil fuels should be stopped to prevent irreversible climate destruction. Climate emergencies have overturned virtually every topic of politics, economics and other journalists, and the press needs to catch up.

They can start with the Climate Emergency Declaration released by CCNow as part of Earth Day’s coverage in April. The first sentence of the statement, co-signed by eight partners, Columbia Journalism Review, Nation, Guardian, Scientific American, Noticias Telemundo, La Repubblica, Asahi Shimbun, and Al Jazeera English, states: Be aware that a climate emergency is here. He emphasized that this was a “statement of science, not politics,” which was linked to an article in a peer-reviewed journal where thousands of scientists confirmed that fact. The statement shows how well the Covid-19 pandemic can report in tackling emergencies and has called on journalists around the world to apply the same urgency to climate issues.

Currently over 30 news rooms signed In a statement, some major retailers have said they will not sign us informally. The word “climate emergency” sounded like activism, they said. In support of it, it may seem prejudiced. Instead, they added that they would leave it to the climate press.

But that’s a problem. Their coverage speaks for itself, and it simply does not reflect the facts of the story. Thousands of scientists around the world, including many of the most prominent climate experts, say that humanity has a climate. It is true that they are facing an emergency. Most major media outlets still do not treat climate change as important as a dozen other public issues. Another fact: climate emergency has a time limit. If it takes too long to stop the temperature rise, it’s too late. CO2Due to its long atmospheric life, further temperature rises are unavoidable or perhaps irreversible.

We are not concerned about whether the press uses the term “climate emergency”. What matters is whether the overall coverage of the outlet treats climate change as an emergency. For example, does the outlet provide the same 24-hour, 24/7 climate story that has been devoted to the 9/11 terrorist attacks or other groundbreaking events before or before the Covid-19 pandemic? Did you change the direction of the newsroom, reassign reporters, and pick up an article about climate? Do journalists convey the article with a sense of urgency?

At the Summit in Glasgow this November, world leaders will take stronger steps against climate emergencies. In the meantime, journalists have a responsibility to help the public understand what is at stake, and importantly, humanity has the technology and solutions to decarbonize the economy. You are responsible for making sure you already have it. What is needed is the political will to carry them out. Journalists are also responsible for making strong stakeholders accountable in doing what is necessary to maintain a livable planet. It starts with telling the truth: about climate emergencies, their solutions, and the time remaining until it’s too late.

  • The Nation’s environmental correspondent Mark Hertsgaard and Columbia Journalism Review editor and publisher Kyle Pope are co-founders of Covering Climate Now.

The media still barely communicates the urgency of the climate crisis | Mark Heartsguard and Kyle Pope

Source link The media still barely communicates the urgency of the climate crisis | Mark Heartsguard and Kyle Pope

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