IMAGINE A WILDFIRE was bearing down on your community. Smoke was darkening the sun; flames were hopping from one canyon to the next. The local fire expert, who had been warning of this moment for years, said the time had come to evacuate. Right now.
But the local newsroom wasn’t so sure. Wouldn’t businesses suffer if residents fled? Surely there were people who thought the crisis would pass. Why don’t we all stay put?
That would be an absurd journalistic reaction, of course. And yet, it is still happening every day in too many newsrooms in the US and around the world.
The planet is burning. It’s time for journalism to recognize that the climate emergency is here—and to emphasize that this is a statement of science, not of politics.
Read more at Columbia Journalism Review.