What is the media’s interest in climate change?
The informative context and discourse that our society complies is currently immersed in a constant transformation process, mainly due to the information overload to which we are exposed everyday and the changes in our habits when consuming information.
This can be mainly put down to the new technologies and social media such as Twitter, to which people are increasingly resorting to express their opinion or take a stance on a particularly topic, which is mainly newsworthy and politically, socially or economically charged.
This overwhelming information overload is why citizens are resorting to other content types, such as climate change, allowing them to forge ahead in the social interest pyramid steering towards a great presence in the media.
Thus, items on climate change currently prevail when reporting on catastrophes and natural disasters, international summits – such as the Change the Change International Climate Change Conference – or reports from the scientific community warning about the kind of world we are heading towards and our current position, and when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issues its verdict by publishing the possible impact of global warming of 1.5 ºC.
Lack of specialisation
However, the media’s work to pass on information on climate change and fighting climate change to the general public is limited to disseminating that news as if it were an event, and not from an educational point of view where the environmental variables are analysed and where it is up to us to mitigate and adapt to the consequences of climate change.
Statistics show that the average number of news items related to climate change, the greatest challenge facing our planet, increases in those countries where its impacts are most felt. However, more efficient and verifiable reporting is required when educating the general public and generating enthusiasm for greater environmental information, in order to strike similar chords as in other fields such as politics or sport.
This complex process does not arise from doomsday reporting of news about the environment or climate change, but it is rather about adapting the scientific community’s message to an increasingly more engaged population, awakening their interest without sending them into torpor, and using information to rigorously remind them that every action counts to alleviate the consequences of climate change. Whether at home, urging governments, etc. Because time is running out.
Interest in international summits
International meetings reflect the media’s interest to address more frequently and from another perspective the discourse led by international climate change experts to counter the inexorability of the passing of time. This is the enemy of our planet and requires climate action to take the lead more decisively.
In this regard, the Change the Change International Climate Change Conference, which will be held in Donostia-San Sebastián from 6 to 8 March, is being showcased as the summit where the scientific community, governmental institutions, business world and the citizenry will propose responses and discuss the following steps to be taken to combat climate change.