2007 - 2022

New Climate Reality, New Media

If every thing has to change this includes the media and public discourse about what we’re going through.

The vision of ‘Environmentalist’ Stanley Johnson on BBC’s ‘flagship’ programme Newsnight the day of the IPCC report has crystallized the problems of public broadcasters complete inability to cope with the reality we are all in; but the truth is the problem is widespread throughout the media, and, I suppose, society. as we try and get our heads around the fact that our economy is costing us our future.

For a long time now groups like Extinction Rebellion have been urging us to “tell the truth”. But the truth is now out and undisputed and the media has a responsibility to do more than that. It’s a prerequisite and a low bar to “tell the truth”. Of course we should, but what else should we do? If the IPCC report challenges everyone to rethink everything what does this mean for the media? Here’s some tentative ideas for discussion in the hope that some people might gather around this agenda.

  1. Call out the worst of columnists and publications spouting writing that is clearly against the common good and against humanity’s future. A weekly prize for the worst culprits. Naming and shaming disinformation and sponsored propaganda.
  2. Crowd-sourcing and drafting a positive new code of conduct for the media drawing on our collective understanding of the dramatic changes we’re experiencing.
  3. Creating spaces for story-telling that isn’t about facts and figures but is about telling the story about this time and peoples experience of climate breakdown and what it means.
  4. Creating a portal of Scottish and international coverage of the very best climate journalism. We’ll fund this.
  5. Profiling the very best scientific peer-reviewed analysis of climate reality.
  6. Focusing on environmental justice and social reality of inequality rather than the vague notions of “humanity”.
  7. Hosting difficult conversations and problems as we shift from pretending this isn’t happening to realising it really is. The trauma this involves is barely imaginable
  8. Making alliances and collaborations for media outlets that are making the change and realising that we are all playing catch-up.
  9. Profiling real innovations and breakthroughs that bring hope (there are lots). Creating a space for the climate movement.
  10. Being realistic about the reality of the situation and avoiding liberal false hope and lifestyle-ism.

There’s a swathe of climate journalists who have been doing a great job for years. I suppose the problem is that most people still experience a media which says “Phew what a scorcher” and treats the fossil fuel industry like any other.

These are just some very rough ideas. I expect/hop others to have much better ones.

If anyone’s interested we’ll convene and fund a forum about how to try and do this. Contact us here. Everyone welcome.



Comments (6)

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  1. Mark Bevis says:

    I have the rough draft of a government policy manifesto that should have been announced last night, if that’s of any interest?
    It’s not fleshed out and formatted yet. Not that 99% of the population will like it, probably 96.5% will not even understand it, but heyho, it is what it is.

    1. John McLeod says:

      Would be very nterested to see your policy manifesto. Is it something you would be willing to share through Bella?

  2. John Birrell says:

    When people die as a result of floods and fires (etc) we should see them as victims of climate change and call their deaths that

  3. Tom Ultuous says:

    When you look at this table sorted by ‘per Capita’ (click on double arrow) the likes of Canada & the US are twice as bad as China so why does so much blame fall on China? Am I missing something apart from the Western bias?

    1. Mark Bevis says:

      The pre-preparation propoganda on the road to war. We should be aware that the US military-industrial-complex (MIC) is run by the Christian equivalent of the Taliban, many of whom actually believe in the rapture.
      Have a look at the work of John Pilger for more depth and nuance.
      To the MIC, the only way to ensure future profits is to have perpetual war (hence Afghanistan), so now that that profit margin has been exhausted on the bodies of US, NATO and Afghan soldiers and local civilians, they’ll be looking for another war.

      China, Ukraine, Iran, North Korea, all fertile sources of resources run by governments that don’t like the petro-dollar, ripe for exploitation if only nobody lived there.
      The MIC are neo-liberals too, so look for disaster capitalism to exploit. They’ll push and push until systems collapse or the “enemy” shoot first,The Gulf Of Tonkin or the Iraqi WMD are examples. then it would simply be a task of pushing their bought politicians into starting a proper war.

      This time around it’s different though. Because they can’t take out Russia, Iran or China without total mobilisation of the US population (not enough active brigades), and the American youth are so unfit that they are in effect unmobilisable.
      There’s a youtube video from 2013 I think of a US general, showing how a ridiculuous number of new recruits break limbs on their first training exercise and have to be invalided out – American society, and the British too no doubt – is so sick that total war is now impossible. Oh, they could have a glorious start with lots of missiles, drones, planes, and it’ll all look spectacularly hollywood, and lots of infrastructure will be blown up, on both sides, but boots on the ground win wars, not high tech gizmos. And when China shoots back, it will be the unfortunate locals near US bases on their lands that will be the biggest “Allied” casualties.

      An example of how America fights wars to lose.
      In WW2, for the final campaign from D-day to Berlin, the US committed 61 divisions. (Each about 16,000 men).
      Now take an atlas, and look at the size of Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran. These are geographically huge places, about the same size as Europe. In Vietnam they tried it with 6 division equivalents, with the same again of ARVN.
      In Iraq it was 3 division equivalents.
      In Afghanistan it was 1.3 division equivalents.
      You can see where this is going.

      The MIC hasn’t yet worked out how to win a war with zero infantry divisions. And that’s probably the only thing holding them back. And the longer it takes, the harder it will be, as COGIC advances, the cost of making war in the traditional sense increases to the point where they can no longer make a profit.

      1. Tom Ultuous says:

        The US & “UK” seem to lose every war they’re involved in apart from when the Russians hander them. We’d be better replacing the army with a very loud recording of Gavin Williamson calling out “SHUT UP AND GO AWAY”.

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