Guardian: ‘Climate Emergency, Crisis or Breakdown’ Instead of Passive ‘Change’

May 17, 2019

Seemingly-white sunshine this Friday afternoon on California’s north coast, the brightness of the low-hanging clouds appears to bleach the air — warm, too.
We did get some decent sun this morning, then on occasion, and now all-the-time all gray.
We’re just in a slight respite from a couple of ‘rareatmospheric rivers that’s swept the state since about Thursday, heavier in the south, but we’ve had some heavy downpours ourselves up here.
Although considered weak systems, there’s still a shitload of rain.

Rare as in continuing climate-changing end results — the UK’s Guardian announced this afternoon a word-change to its style guide to more-accurately depict the subject: ‘Instead of “climate change” the preferred terms are “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming”, although the original terms are not banned.’

Also maybe add some fucking exclamation points!
And as if to emphasize the shift, illustration to the left, by Handoko Tjung, (found here), shows the cartoon of environmental unfrozen-horror, probably most reflected in the eyes of the two bears — frightened bewilderment.

Guardian editor-in-chief, Katharine Viner: ‘“We want to ensure that we are being scientifically precise, while also communicating clearly with readers on this very important issue…The phrase ‘climate change’, for example, sounds rather passive and gentle when what scientists are talking about is a catastrophe for humanity.
“Increasingly, climate scientists and organisations from the UN to the Met Office are changing their terminology, and using stronger language to describe the situation we’re in.”

Words ‘catastrophe‘ and ‘humanity,’ spoken together!

Further at NiemanLab:

Human-caused climate change is arguably the largest crisis facing the world’s population of more than 7 billion, but news organizations have struggled to cover it adequately.
“Newsroom managers have failed to see the climate crisis as fundamental, all-encompassing, and worthy of attention from every journalist on their payrolls,” Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope wrote in an article, “The media are complacent while the world burns,” that was co-published last month in The Nation and Columbia Journalism Review ahead of a conference on how news organizations can reframe their climate change coverage.
Mainstream U.S. publications, in particular, have often failed to highlight the issue.
The Guardian has been ahead of other outlets in the attention it pays to climate change, especially in its daily reporting — it includes CO2 levels in its weather reports, for instance, and it partnered with The Nation and CJR on that conference.

Wording around climate really does matter, and though The Guardian’s changes are technically small, they may help reinforce the importance of climate reporting in the minds of both readers and newsroom staff.

The Guardian just might be the best newspaper in the world. I check in multiple times daily, and it’s been a news reality source big-time for me at least dating back to the ‘surge’ times of the Iraqi War, when I first started this blog.
And a ‘climate crisis,’ it is — just shitty timing the US is right now entangled in a ‘constitutional crisis‘ with one of the most-vile human beings.
Ever!

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