PSR Letter on Climate in the Washington Post July 11, 2018

The Washington Post recently published a letter by PSR’s Director for Environment and Health, Barbara Gottlieb. Gottlieb’s letter critiques reporters’ blatant avoidance of the term “climate change” in the Post’s June 25th article, “Immense rains are causing more flash flooding, and experts say it’s getting worse.” In that article, journalists referred to such climate-driven phenomena as “long-rising air temperatures” and increases in “global temperature,” but conveniently avoided the c-word.

PSR encourages journalists to use proper terminology when discussing climate change. In Gottlieb’s words, “Calling problems by their right name helps us identify their causes and specify their solutions.”

We also encourage you to be proactive in writing letters to the editor and speaking up when scientific integrity is compromised. If your local newspapers write about terrible wildfires, or heat waves, or drought, or flooding, but conveniently overlook any mention of climate change, don’t hesitate to remind them of the importance of accurate coverage. To boost your chances of getting your letter published, be sure to discuss how the topic affects your community.

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