Have you ever felt like US and British media are doing an extremely poor job of covering climate change. You know we have.
A former BBC correspondent recently gave us a good insider’s perspective on why this is the case, as well as letting us know that it isn’t expected to get much better. Mark Brayne writes:
This past Monday night, discussing climate change at a very poorly-attended (as usual, when the subject is global warming or peak oil) screening at the Frontline Journalists’ Club in London of the movie Collapse with Michael Ruppert — yes, flawed, but with much sound analysis about oil and energy — I heard from a former BBC producer colleague that internal editorial discussions now under way at the BBC on planning next year’s news agenda have in fact explicitly parked climate change in the category “Done That Already, Nothing New to Say.”
Yeah, that’s sad.
While we feel tempted to blame corrupt politicians and oil companies for ignoring this critical issue (and there’s plenty of good reason for that), it seems a big part of it is also just to blame on modern-day journalism tactics and culture.
Here’s the start of Brayne’s piece:
As a former BBC foreign correspondent (Moscow, Berlin, Vienna, Beijing) during the Cold War, and former World Service editor now struggling with the monumental failure of contemporary journalism on climate change (Nicholas Stern’s 2007 comments about the market are just as relevant for the news media), I have to agree with recent commentators on Climate Progress who see the roots of this failure more in newsroom culture and subtle peer expectation than in a direct and explicit response to political or commercial demands (although those play their part, of course).
To continue reading about this, check out the full piece on Climate Progress.
Image Credit: screenshot of BBC Special Report on Climate Change last updated over a couple years ago.