the media are still not adequately conveying the urgency of climate change
most media are still describing climate-wrecking fracked gas as “clean”
the very feasible and economical clean energy solutions are not getting enough ink
you can make a difference by telling the media you rely on that you expect more of them
Every reporter and editor needs to watch this 3-minute video by Cornell University’s Dr. Robert Howarth explaining the climate problem posed by methane leakage from natural gas operations (more videos here)
We have two main issues right now that we want to see covered better in the media.
One is our report: North Carolina Clean Path 2025: Achieving an Economical Clean Energy Future. It shows how NC can almost entirely get rid of fossil fuels for electricity by 2030 (and get halfway there by 2025). Read up on it here.The full report is long, but please read the 8-page Executive Summary and the Action Plan. If you see a media report saying solar and batteries are too expensive or not ready, you can cite this report, which is a plan that is ready now and is cheaper and creates more jobs than the path Duke Energy is planning.
The other issue is the climate danger presented by methane leakage from natural gas operations. We want the media to understand the trail of breadcrumbs that leads from climate change to emissions of methane (the major component of natural gas), from methane emissions to the rise of fracking, and from the rise of fracking to the market for fracked natural gas that is being created as utilities (including Duke Energy) build massive infrastructure to expand their burning of natural gas for electricity.
Sadly, the problem is exacerbated by some media outlets that, in an effort to stay financially viable in a difficult time, have established “branded content” departments that help sponsors produce and publish advertising that mimics actual news coverage. The oil and gas industry is among the worst offenders. Read more.
2019 WUNC Campaign
After repeatedly calling on WUNC to provide more complete and accurate climate and energy coverage (see 2018 campaign below), we wrote another letter to station president and general manager Connie Walker on August 28, 2019. We repeated our call for coverage that corresponds to the enormity of the crisis, and pointed out that the massive amount of Duke Energy advertising on the station increases WUNC’s obligation to scrutinize Duke’s role in stoking climate change.
Then, on October 17, 2019, more than 400 WUNC listeners and supporters wrote a letter to Walker demanding that the station adequately cover Duke Energy’s role in the climate crisis. Read the letter and the news release.
2018 WUNC Campaign
In March, WUNC did an otherwise decent story on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in which they repeatedly stated or implied that natural gas was a cleaner alternative to coal.
We wrote two letters to WUNC General Manager Connie Walker, one in April and one in May. Many NC WARN members and Press the Press team members wrote letters to her as well, and the News & Observer ran an editorial about it.
To date, we have not received a substantive reply from Connie Walker.