Words matter. When the major networks consistently fail to treat climate change as a crisis or emergency, they enable complacency and inaction.
In 2018, only 3.5% of national television news segments that mentioned climate change referred to it as a crisis or emergency. But when lethal heatwaves are the new normal, it's a crisis. When stronger storms force millions from their homes over and over again, it's a crisis. When kids walk out of school so that adults will see their future is at stake, it's a crisis.Tell the major networks: We need you to call "climate change" exactly what it is — a climate crisis.
To whom it may concern:
We're asking your network and newsrooms to call the climate crisis transforming the Earth exactly what it is: a climate crisis.
Because when lethal heatwaves are the new normal, it's a crisis. When stronger storms force millions from their homes over and over again, it's a crisis. When kids walk out of school so adults will see their future is at stake, it's a crisis.
But the coverage we see on television doesn't match the current reality. In 2018, less than 4 percent of news segments spoke of climate change's impacts as a "crisis" or "emergency." And when disasters like supercharged hurricanes and wildfires do strike, too few segments make the connection to the greenhouse gases and climate change behind them.
We need you to act boldly and quickly. With scientists warning of global catastrophe unless we slash emissions by 2030, the stakes have never been clearer.
Your network can make a difference. With your voice and your reach, you can jump start a global conversation on how we solve this crisis. While we still have time.
It starts with the news calling this exactly what it is: call it a climate crisis.