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Climate and Environment

Santiago Saez Moreno
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piqer: Santiago Saez Moreno
Friday, 14 December 2018

Series: How The Guardian Created Modern Climate Reporting

On Christmas Eve 2014, former Guardian editor-in-chief Alan Rusbridger was about to step down (he would in summer 2015) after two decades at the helm of one of the world's most important daily papers in the English language. Rusbridger sat down to reminisce about his time at the job, and whether he had any regrets. And he found one: 

"Very few regrets, I thought, except this one: that we had not done justice to this huge, overshadowing, overwhelming issue of how climate change will probably, within the lifetime of our children, cause untold havoc and stress to our species."

So he decided that, in the few months that he had left as editor-in-chief, he would do his best to revert that, changing how climate journalism is understood. And he did.

Let me tell you about my experience now. Being a climate journalist is a seriously distressing activity. You spend day after day submerged in some of the most relevant, horrifying information you could imagine. You talk to the experts, and the messages are extremely worrying. You try to do your best to convey the gravity of those messages, only to notice they only achieve a fraction of the impact of any other story of the day. You check your colleagues' work from other outlets and see, pretty much, the same. They wrote an incredible story about the end of the world, but it's buried somewhere on page 26. The front page has been stolen by the 17th "football match of the century" in three years. 

That's what The Guardian was trying, and managed, to change.

This podcast series (12 episodes, between 15 and 45 minutes per episode) follows The Guardian's transformation into a climate reporting behemoth, and an example to many of us reporters all over the world. It's a rare, unique and wonderfully narrated story about storytellers. The podcast uses real recordings from the transformation days, plus interviews, commentary and more, and the website includes further resources such as links and videos.

Series: How The Guardian Created Modern Climate Reporting
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