Climate Change

Going Full Doomsday: Reporters Must Convey the Perils of Climate Change without Paralyzing Their Audience

What is the right way to cover global climate change? Columbia Journalism Review investigates.

Journalists play a crucial role in helping the public understand how to think about climate change and what can be done to reduce the impacts. However, the strategies required to reach different climate-change audiences are far from obvious. Doomsday scenarios might work for some people, like the one published in David Wallace-Wells’s New York Times piece, “The Uninhabitable Earth.” But for others, such negative frames may paralyze audiences and lead to further disengagement.

Science journalist Cassandra Willyard investigates what it takes to cover an issue that defies nearly every aspect of traditional news narratives.

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