Why climate and environment belong together

by Felix Schaumann

In a recent blogpost, I argued that climate policy should be seen and treated as something fundamentally different from environmental policy. However, I am not sure I entirely convinced even myself. Therefore, I’d like to use this piece to take the opposite stance, by arguing that climate and environmental problems should be confronted together.

It is true that the main cause of climate change consists of burning fossil fuels, suggesting a focus on economic solutions relating to energy use. However, it is also true that the effects of climate change present themselves as environmental problems – ranging from storms and droughts to the extinction of species and the loss of entire ecosystems.

Rain forest in Bolivia - photo by Felix Schaumann

 

Continue reading Why climate and environment belong together

2020 on Twitter – Was there a topic besides Covid19?

by Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

After the outstanding year 2019, attention for climate change on Twitter in the past year quickly dropped to the level from the years 2018 and before. The harsh decline directly coincides with the rising worldwide attention for the “new” Corona virus later named Covid19, which caused the global pandemic the world is still struggling with. This looks like a prime example for the “Crowding-Out Effect”: Environmental topics tend to be pushed out of media reporting and public attention in times of crisis (Djerf-Pierre 2012).

Nevertheless, climate change punctually received high attention on Twitter. In the first months of 2020, the topic was still as high on the agenda as in the end of 2019, with natural and political events triggering peaks of attention.

graph showing daily number of tweets concerning climate change in 2020

*The Online Media Monitor on Climate Change Coverage (short form: OMM) collects tweets related to climate change if they contain at least one of the search strings #climatechange OR “climate change” OR “global warming” OR Klimawandel and receives at least 5 retweets. Read the OMM Guide to get more details about the methods and take a look at the error log file to get information about server problems. Continue reading 2020 on Twitter – Was there a topic besides Covid19?

How do climate change documentaries imagine the future? A video commentary

Documentaries are one way of presenting the problems climate change poses, but also possibilities for a better future, to a broad audience. In this video, our team member Shorouk Elkobros, now Science Communication Consultant at the European Science Foundation, compares the approach and framing of different climate documentaries. Have fun watching it – but be warned, you might want to watch some or all of the documentaries mentioned afterwards!

The video summarizes the results from Shorouk’s Master’s thesis in Integrated Climate System Sciences at the University of Hamburg, titled “Multimodal framing of climate change-related future scenarios in documentaries”.

2019 on Twitter: Climate activism awakening

by Hadas Emma Kedar and Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

Shortly before 2020 is over, we will have a look back at 2019 to map the climate change debate as reflected transnationally on Twitter. Compared with the two years prior, 2019 showed a particular abundance of climate-related tweets: While the total tweets count of 2018 grew by 8% from 2017, the total count of 2019 grew by 70%. Then what triggered the climate discourse so much on Twitter that year? Continue reading 2019 on Twitter: Climate activism awakening

Overstimulated by the news: How to navigate through times of crisis

by Susan Jörges

“Robert-Koch-Institute reports highest daily number of infections”, appears on the screen of my phone. The local newspaper lying on the kitchen table is titled with a similar headline, corona is issue number one in the evening TV-news, and my Instagram feed recommends a livestream of the government´s press conference.

Photo from pexels.com

Continue reading Overstimulated by the news: How to navigate through times of crisis

Let’s focus on the short-term benefits of long-term climate protection!

by Michael Brüggemann

A new study by Samset et al. (2020) in Nature Communcations finds that even under strong and sustained mitigation efforts, it will take the climate system until mid-century to demonstrate a discernible cooling response. Unfortunately, we must accept and live with the frustrating fact that the global climate system is a rather gigantic tanker ship that will change its course only several decades after humanity has decided to pull the emissions steering wheel into another direction. Yet, we should also think about what may motivate immediate action to reduce the risk of climate collapse in the far future. Rather than only fixating on the nebulous, future benefits of present-day climate protection, I would suggest that communicators should focus on highlighting positive short-term side effects of climate protection measures.

Source: Pixabay

Continue reading Let’s focus on the short-term benefits of long-term climate protection!

Ein Bild und tausend Worte: Wie framen deutsche Online-Medien das Thema Ernährung?

von Felicitas Vach

Fortsetzung von “Like this, eat that: Warum wir essen, was wir in den Medien sehen”

Um besser zu verstehen, wie Online-Medien die alltäglichen Entscheidungen von Konsumenten und Medienrezipienten für eine bestimmte Ernährung beeinflussen, spielt die Art und Weise, wie Online-Medien das Thema Ernährung in ihren Beiträgen multimodal framen, eine entscheidende Rolle. Dabei wirken Bilder und Texte zusammen.

Online-Medien greifen oft auf positive und ansprechende Bilder zurück, um eine hohe Reichweite zu generieren. Diese werden in den meisten Redaktionen aber erst nach dem Verfassen des Textes ausgesucht. Da Online-Artikel meist über eine kleinere Vorschau erreicht werden, muss die Überschrift die Leser abholen und zum Weiterlesen des gesamten Artikels anregen. Die Schlagworte aus der Überschrift sind prägend für den ersten Eindruck und definieren deshalb auch die emotionale Einordnung des dazu gehörigen Titelbildes. In meiner qualitativen Inhaltanalyse von Online-Artikeln werden erste Erkenntnisse zur visuellen und verbalen Darstellung des Themenkomplex sichtbar. Continue reading Ein Bild und tausend Worte: Wie framen deutsche Online-Medien das Thema Ernährung?

Warum das Zwei-Grad-Ziel ein (Kommunikations-) Problem ist

von Michael Brüggemann und Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

Thermometer 2 Grad mehrIn seinem Kommentar zur Klimapolitik hat sich der Innenpolitik-Chef der FAZ kürzlich schwer vertippt: Er schreibt, es gäbe „die Verpflichtung, bis 2050 die Erwärmung deutlich unter zwei Grad zu senken“. Dabei ist es natürlich so, dass sich die Zwei-Grad-Grenze, so wie sie die Staatengemeinschaft 2015 in Paris beschlossen hat, auf das Jahr 2100 bezieht. Fehler können passieren und gehören zum journalistischen wie zu jedem anderen Handwerk dazu – genauso wie eine öffentliche Korrektur des Fehlers, mit Publikation möglichst an gleicher Stelle.

Dass ein solcher Fehler bei einer der führenden Qualitätszeitungen vorkommt, hat aber möglicherweise tieferliegende Gründe: Die Zwei-Grad-Grenze bietet keine Anleitung und wenig Anreiz für gute Klimapolitik in der Gegenwart. Continue reading Warum das Zwei-Grad-Ziel ein (Kommunikations-) Problem ist

Like this, eat that: Warum wir essen, was wir in den Medien sehen

von Felicitas Vach

Der Klimawandel und seine daraus entstehenden Folgen werden momentan intensiv diskutiert. Und unsere Ernährung spielt für die zukünftige Entwicklung eine nicht unerhebliche Rolle. Schon bald werden etwa 10 Billionen Menschen auf der Erde leben (UN World Population Prospects, 2019), die alle ernährt werden müssen. Besonders der Bedarf – oder eher der Wunsch – nach Fleischprodukten wird zusammen mit der Population massiv wachsen. Selbst wenn der Fleischkonsum in Wohlstandsländern eher gleichbleibt, wird er in Entwicklungsländern, die immer wohlhabender werden, weiterhin ansteigen (Ritchie & Roser, 2017). Dabei spielt auch die Berichterstattung der Medien eine Rolle. Continue reading Like this, eat that: Warum wir essen, was wir in den Medien sehen

What would you miss the most?

Interactive visual arts project on climate change consequences

by Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

During my research stay in Stellenbosch, South Africa, I came across an interesting arts project on climate change, which was installed during the cultural festival “Woordfees”.

A note on the wall invites onlookers to participate: to illustrate or write about what or who they would miss the most if our climate completely collapsed. Another note asked to describe fond memories of nature.

interactive art project on climate change

All around, people posted little notes and drawings, all of which gave interesting insights into their perceptions of climate change, especially their fears.

Continue reading What would you miss the most?