We just had yet another warning from the UN that we are essentially on course for a catastrophe – but it was hardly reported in the ABC News, certainly completely pushed aside by the news editors during primetime, and we are not hearing anyone talking about it on the radio either. What is going on?
On the day the UN report was published, an interview with UN Chief Antonio Guterres, produced by the British public broadcaster the BBC, was briefly aired on Australia’s ABC News channel, just once in the afternoon news, and again just one more time in the late night news, in an ongoing stream of news about what the editors at the ABC considered more important for us to know about, such as a netball victory, an environmental story from the wetlands in Surf Coast Shire, a rally in Iran…
We need to hold the ABC – along with SBS and all other media, as well as our politicians, the fossil fuel companies and the lobbyist think tanks – to account for what they’ve done to our planet.
At the moment, Greenland is turning ice into water at the speed of seven Olympic swimming pools per SECOND. Record-level melting. That’s 1 million tonnes of ice per minute.
Read the United Nations report:
→ United Nations – 27 October 2022:
‘Emissions Gap Report 2022: The Closing Window – Climate crisis calls for rapid transformation of societies’
Read this warning from world scientists:
→ BioScience – 26 October 2022:
World Scientists’ Warning of a Climate Emergency 2022
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Media coverage from responsible media outlets
→ Science Alert – 29 October 2022
Almost Half of Earth’s Vital Signs Are Now ‘Code Red’, Scientists Warn
→ The Guardian – 28 October 2022:
World close to ‘irreversible’ climate breakdown, warn major studies
→ BBC News – 28 October 2022:
Climate change: UN warns key warming threshold slipping from
“There is “no credible pathway” to keep the rise in global temperatures below the key threshold of 1.5C, according to a bleak new UN assessment.”
→ The Guardian – 26 October 2022:
Current emissions pledges will lead to catastrophic climate breakdown, says UN
“United Nations says governments need to set new goals and make deeper cuts to limit temperature rises to 1.5C.”
So, Gaven Morris, why does your team of news editors and journalists in the ABC not prioritise covering this? Should your newsroom not – as a duty of care – be letting people know what the science says that we need to do now, collectively and in unity as a society?
What could the ABC do that would make a significant different and “change the story”, if not history: declare a climate emergency. And then start to act accordingly. What is holding you back?
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“Collective action is needed”
The climate crisis has reached a “really bleak moment”, one of the world’s leading climate scientists said, after a slew of major reports laid bare this week how close our planet is to catastrophe.
Collective action is needed by the world’s nations more now than at any point since the second world war to avoid climate tipping points, the Swedish professor Johan Rockström said.
What the new UN report tells us is that no government is doing anything like what would be required for a 1.5C world. And why is that? What is holding them back?
Well, ABC journalists… maybe you should have a look at companies like Shell and TotalEnergies. They have both just doubled their quarterly profits to about $15 billion dollars. Profits at the world’s biggest oil companies have soared to nearly $269 billion dollars so far this year as Russia’s war on Ukraine pushed up energy prices, according to estimates from analysts.
Meanwhile, the Australian Governments back Scarborough/Pluto LNG expansion (1.3 billions tonnes CO2e), NWS LNG extension (4.3 billion), the Beetaloo Basin fracking (1.3 billion), fracking the Channel Country, Barossa LNG, New Acland coal, and on it goes.
It is time to lodge a complaint. Actually, many complaints! We need to change the story in society – and for that to happen, a major story change and change of priorities certainly must take place now within the ABC and SBS, our public broadcasters, who have a responsibility to hold the Australian people informed about urgent and important matters, which an approaching catastrophe must be declared to be.
→ ABC News management and editors, here are seven specific recommendations: www.allforclimate.today/publications/role-of-the-media
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It’s time to speak up. This is a climate emergency and we need to act accordingly. All of us. So find your role, ABC, and let’s start the job of getting to zero emissions as quickly as we possibly can. A huge responsibility lies with you.
→ Write a letter to the ABC:
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PS: Five years ago, together with the team behind Centre for Climate Safety, I ran a petition with a similar message – www.climatesafety.info/publicbroadcasters – which both the ABC and SBS management decided to completely ignore. They refused to see us or to even be interviewed when we wanted to hand them over the approximately 1,000 signatures.
So this is why this time around I suggest to do it differently. We need to step up and take action as individuals to make our collective voice heard. #FindYourRole
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ABC and SBS: Here’s what you are failing to explain to us all
- Implementation of current Nationally Determined Contributions pledges would put the world on track for around 2.5ºC of warming by the end of the century — significantly missing the Paris Agreement’s 1.5ºC limit. (UNEP 2022)
- Despite this, governments are on track to produce more than double the fossil fuels that would be in line with the Paris Agreement’s goal of 1.5ºC. (UNEP 2021)
- If the world’s fossil fuels reserves were to be developed it would result in more than 3.5 million tons of emissions, more than seven times than the world’s carbon budget can allow. (Global Registry of Fossil Fuels 2022)
- To limit warming to 1.5ºC the world must decrease fossil fuel production by at least 6% per year between 2020 and 2030. The longer we expand coal, oil and gas, the faster this transition will have to happen. (UNEP 2021)
- To stay below 1.5C there must be no new oil and gas fields or coal mines, and global clean energy investment tripled by 2030 plus immediate and rapid transition away from fossil fuel production. (IEA 2022)
- Yet the Paris Agreement makes zero mentions of coal, oil or gas and must be complemented by a Fossil Fuel Treaty.
- Air pollution, most significantly from burning fossil fuels, is causing more than seven million premature deaths each year — 1 in 5 deaths worldwide. It contributes to cardiovascular disease, respiratory conditions, and cancers. Wildfires, made increasingly intense and common by climate change, add to this burden.
- The fossil fuel industry is getting rich off a global energy crisis, meanwhile as we gather here in Egypt a fossil fuelled energy system has failed to give 600 million people across Africa any access to energy.
- Every continent in the world has enough renewable energy potential to provide 100% renewable energy access to its population. Africa has the greatest renewable energy potential on earth. (UTS, Sydney 2021)
- Transitioning to 100% renewable energy globally would cost $450 billion annually until 2030. Forecasts indicate that up to $570 billion will be spent annually on new oil and gas during the same period. (IISD 2022)
- New supplies take years to come onstream and “are unlikely to provide any relief in the short term”. The IEA says oil and gas projects starting production since 2010 have taken an average of 19 years from the award of an exploration licence through to first production.
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Hold them to account
#StoryChange #ClimateForAll #AllForClimate #CoveringClimateNow #reportersforfuture #ResponsibleReporting #ClimateEmergency #AustraliaDeclares #FossilFuelFreeAustralia #GasFreeAustralia #FossilFuelFreedom #ZeroCarbon #ZeroCarbon2030