International Panel on Climate Change Synthesis Report, 2007
Increasing scientific evidence proves that global warming is a serious issue. There has been an increase in temperature, increase in sea levels, melting of glaciers, ground instability and numerous other dilemmas that are a result of global warming. The causes of climate change are anthropogenic and the increase of Global GMG has increased by 70% since in 1970-2004. The future effects of global warming include: increased natural disasters, changes in ecosystems, extinction of 20-30% of plant and animal species, decrease of crops and livestock, increase of hunger and malnutrition and many other crises. There are many things can be done to stop the present and future effects of global warming. Creating policies and changing public behavior and lifestyle is especially crucial.
Climate Change and Utah: The Scientific Consensus, IC, September 2007
The impact of climate change in Utah is tremendous. Over the past decade, the average temperature of Utah has increased. It is predicted that Utah will have a higher average temperature than other places in the world and the United States. The Western United States is heating up faster than global averages. This will result in less snow and prolonged drought. Furthermore, the increasing temperatures are anthropogenic. Scientists agree that if CO2 emissions are not reduced and policies are not created, that this will result in serious issues in the future of Utah, such as less snow, fewer frost days, heat waves, and limited natural resources like water.
IAP Statement on Ocean Acidification, The Interacademy Panel, June 2009
The acidity of oceans throughout the world has been increasing due to global warming. CO2 is absorbed by oceans, changing the pH of the oceans and resulting in higher acidity. This is causing the destruction of marine life, especially coral reefs. Research suggests that by 2050, all coral reefs and polar ecosystems will be severely affected. Ocean acidity is unchangeable and one of the solutions in stopping the increase of acidity is decreasing the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere.
Fewer Americans See Solid Evidence of Global Warming, Pew Report, Oct 2009
There has been a decrease in the percentage of Americans that accept the reality of global warming. In 2008, 71% of Americans thought there was sufficient evidence that global warming is happening. In 2009 this dropped to 57%. Furthermore, 44% of Americans believed global warming was a threat in 2008, but this dropped to 35% in 2009. Additionally, in 2008, 47% of Americans believed that global warming was anthropogenic, but in 2009
this decreased to 36%. Policies on climate change are also unknown by the general public. For example 55% of people do not know what “cap and trade” is and the impact it has.
Gallup Poll Finds More Americans Say Media Overstate Warming Risks, Gallup Poll (2009)
Public skepticism of global warming is on the rise. More people believe that the media exaggerates global warming. In 2009, 57% of Americans believed that the media correctly portrays global warming or underestimates it. This is a decrease from 2006 in which 66 % believed that the media correctly portrays global warming or underestimates it. In 2009, 41% of Americans believed the media exaggerated global warming, while in 2008 only 30% believed the media exaggerated global warming.
Signals and noise: Mass-media coverage of climate change in the USA and UK, EMBO, November 2007
Media coverage of global warming directly influences public perception and policies. Since media coverage of global warming expresses skepticism of scientific consensus and anthropogenic global warming, it results in the public also being skeptical. Global warming is also portrayed in a “balanced” way, in which skeptics of global warming are give a prominent voice. Boykoff and Rajan report that “Even when there is sufficient consensus over data and models, skepticism is induced either by manufacturing opposing facts or conflating facts with value.” Presenting opinions rather than scientific facts is another weakness that must be improved upon.
Talking about a revolution: climate change and the media. An IIED Briefing, International Institute for Environment and Development, Dec 2007
There have been improvements in media coverage of climate change, but the media still covers climate change in a “balanced” way and ignores scientific consensus. The media also fails to connect climate change to people’s lives. There are two main techniques used in climate coverage, and both techniques dampen public interest and activism: one style of coverage is alarmist, emphasizing catastrophes and disaster, while the other over-emphasizes small-actions such as recycling, “going green” etc. There should be an emphasis on policies that reduce CO2 emissions, and the ways in which climate change is relevant to people’s lives.
Climate change and journalistic norms: A case-study of US mass-media coverage, Oxford Report, 2005
Coverage of climate change in the media is impacted by “journalistic norms.” Journalistic norms include: personalization, dramatization and novelty, authority-order and balance. Selling a story and generating public attention are the main objectives in journalism. Climate change sells when there is controversy. This has resulted in partiality in climate change coverage.
Global Warming’s Six Americas, January 2010, Yale/George Mason University, January 2010
Concern about and belief in global warming has decreased. In 2008, 18% of adults in the United States reported that they were alarmed about global warming (being the highest level of belief/acceptance of global warming). Another 33% were concerned (second highest level of belief/acceptance of global warming) and believed it was happening. In 2009, there was a sharp decrease: only 10% were alarmed, and additional 29% were concerned. The percentage of adults in the United States that rejected climate change in 2008 was 7%; another 11% reported that they were doubtful; 12% felt disengaged from global warming. In 2009 this increased:16% rejected climate change, 13% were doubtful and 6% felt disengaged.
Media Coverage of Climate Change: Current Trends, Strengths, Weaknesses, Human Development Report, 2007/2008
Television and daily newspapers are top providers of scientific information. The internet is also playing an increasing role in climate coverage. In the 1990’s there was an increasing presence of “skeptical” scientists represented in climate change coverage in the media. Furthermore, journalism tends to indiscriminately diffuse information, rather than providing accurate information. Media coverage is also affected by the framing and presentation of the story being covered. Economics, political pressure and culture also contribute to the framing and presentation of a piece. There are three main factors affecting the media’s coverage of climate change: lack of understanding of climate change facts, the difficulty of overcoming the need to “sell” a story, and the lack of financial resources in covering climate change.