A black hole at Dale & Co.?

Contributors to Dale & Co., the new collaborative current affairs blog, might have editorial independence over their articles but it doesn’t look as though many of them have an inclination towards discussing the ‘greatest challenge’ facing the world today, climate change.

In fact, after three weeks and hundreds of posts from hundreds of contributors from across the political spectrum, climate change has barely registered as an issue at all.

There was a post by ‘wine expert’ and self-styled ‘environmental entrepreneur’ Jerry Lockspeiser, lamenting how the wine industry may suffer due to global warming.

Another post under the ‘climate’ category looked at Christopher Monckton’s recent trip down under. It is written by Shane Stone, a name within the Australian Liberal Party, who praises Monckton and recommends he be appointed to the House of Lords. That’s the same ‘eccentric’ Christopher Monckton who disputes that there is a correlation between increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and climate change.

To his detractors, Monckton is referred to as an irrational ‘denier’. To his allies, he is a rational ‘skeptic’. I subscribe to neither of these labels. I find both to be crude and misleading.

I highlight the two labels to demonstrate just how polarised the climate debate is at present. It is this polarisation that has fed the mistrust of many environmentalists. We monitor the mainstream media with beady eyes and try to call out misrepresentation of climate data whenever we see it.

So, I apologise in advance if this post reads as slightly neurotic, but I am genuinely curious as to whether there is an editorial decision at Dale & Co to marginalise climate change as an issue.

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5 Ways to save climate change…

…from becoming yesterday’s news…

Speak in plain English. We have to stop being a closed shop and start talking to people. That means fewer acronyms and clearer explanations of scientific terms and concepts. After all, many newspaper readers will only give an article a cursory glance before deciding whether or not to read it in full. If it is littered with terms like Carbon capture and storage (CCS) or Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW), they may flick straight to the next page.

Listen, engage and do not judge others for the decisions they make. People choose to shop in large multinational supermarkets because they are cheap and convenient. Buying fresh, organic, free-range produce from the local farmers’ market is simply not an option for most people.

Keep it real. Statistics, percentages and diagrams are important, but what about the human element? How will the figures represented in the graph affect me and my world?

Be practical. Talking in abstract terms about climate change can be difficult to relate to. How can people make a difference either as individuals, communities or as part of larger organisations?

Emphasise the positives. There is a sense of climate fatigue. This isn’t because people don’t care, but they have been overwhelmed by stories of flooding, drought and melting icecaps. For good measure, report and analyse green success stories.