“The media are complacent while the world burns.” That’s the headline on an article, by Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope, co-published last week by CJR, The Nation, and The Guardian. “At a time when civilization is accelerating toward disaster, climate silence continues to reign across the bulk of the US news media,” Hertsgaard and Pope write. “Especially on television, where most Americans still get their news, the brutal demands of ratings and money work against adequate coverage of the biggest story of our time.”
The statistics are alarming—both in terms of the science and in terms of the reporting. According to a 2012 study by Media Matters for America, for example, TV and print outlets, across an 18-month period, gave 40 times more coverage to the Kardashians than to ocean acidification. When climate change has been covered, it’s often been covered poorly: false “debates” between real experts and denialist cranks; the failure to link unfolding disasters to climate change; framing policy solutions in terms of the political horse race; the list goes on.
How can we do better? Yesterday, Hertsgaard, environment correspondent at The Nation, and Pope, editor and publisher at CJR, convened a town hall at Columbia Journalism School to address that question. Speakers including Bill McKibben, Naomi Klein, and Bill Moyers debated a range of related problems—the lack of newsroom diversity causing certain communities to be under-served; the flaws in coverage of the global wave of climate activism—as well
Read more here: https://www.cjr.org/the_media_today/covering-climate-change-now.php