Climate Change Media the Center Essay

Download this Essay in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Essay:

Where the paper once debated policy options -- which reasonably could include doing nothing -- it now uses intellectually deficient arguments riddled with logical fallacies to debate the subject. The tone has gone from one of applying academically-accepted economics to undermine the policy prescriptions for dealing with climate change, an approach that is intellectually honest but hard to follow for those without an economics background, to simplistic arguments that are much easier to understand but are lacking in intellectual rigor.


There have been changes over the years with respect to how climate change arguments are framed. For much of the debate in the past fifteen years, the Wall Street Journal has staked out an editorial position as climate change skeptics, but its news coverage reflected balance. The tone of the writing was in general sober and professional. It is only in the past couple of years that a distinct shift has occurred in the coverage of climate change in the Wall Street Journal. These changes reflect the nature of the debate in general. When the oil industry was mounting challenges to climate research in the mid-00s, the Journal's coverage was focused on skepticism and focused mainly on science. This echoed the nature of the coverage since 1995, which while being keen to present the skeptical side, was not unduly so. With the science long-since settled and the Obama Administration set to form its policies on the subject in early 2009, the tone became academic and articulate. Strong cases were made against specific policy prescriptions and there was no conflation of science and politics. Over time, however, this conflation occurred. The WSJ's editorial pages were handed over to climate change skeptics, and the tone deteriorated. Theories were replaced with shouting, and having actual knowledge of the subject matter was no longer a prerequisite for writing about it -- or for having an opinion venerated in text. In addition, the volume of articles increased dramatically in this period. In the winter of 2009, the time of sober discussion, there were seven articles on the subject -- three were intelligent and four were shrill. By the autumn of 2009, there were 46 articles on climate change. Three were intelligent, the other 43 were shrill opinion pieces. From an article every other week, the WSJ began writing editorials denouncing climate change in the most unintelligent terms possible at a rate of around three times per week.

The tone shift is not entirely surprising, given the highly political nature of the WSJ. At its best, the paper upheld its reputation for conservative economics and intelligent discourse. Over time, however, the paper has degenerated, mirroring the quality of the debate overall. Skeptics are nothing new, and their views are no better supported today than they were in early 2009. They are simply being given a bigger megaphone from which to preach, to the detriment of discourse overall and policy discourse in particular.

Appendix a: Climate Change Coverage Around the World (source: Center for Science and Technology Policy Research)

Works Cited:

Balling, R. (1995). Keep cool about global warming. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 13, 2011 from

Jolis, a. (2009). Revenge of the climate laymen. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Krupp, F. (2009). Carbon caps are the best policy. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Lomborg, B. (2009). Ethiopia, malnutrition and climate change. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

No author. (2010). Media coverage of climate change. Center for Science and Technology Policy Research. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

RealClimate. (2005). The Wall Street Journal vs. The scientific consensus. RealClimate. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Regalado, a. (2003). Leading the news: Warming's skeptics face storm clouds. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 13, 2011 from

Revkin, a. (2009). Hacked e-mail is new fodder for climate dispute. New York Times. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Robinson, a. & Robinson, N. (2000). Global warming is 300-year-old news. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 13, 2011 from

Rowe, J. (2004). The time to address climate change is now. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 13, 2011 from

Sensenbrenner, F. (2009). Technology is the answer to climate change. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Strassel, K. (2009). The climate change lobby has regrets. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Strassel, K. (2011). The climate change. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from

Wilson, T. (2008). A bad climate trade-off. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 3, 2011 from[continue]

Cite This Essay:

"Climate Change Media The Center" (2011, February 03) Retrieved December 8, 2016, from

"Climate Change Media The Center" 03 February 2011. Web.8 December. 2016. <>

"Climate Change Media The Center", 03 February 2011, Accessed.8 December. 2016,

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Climate Change the United States Environmental Protection

    Climate Change The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns that climate change is real. In the past one hundred years, the average temperature of the Earth has risen 1.4 F. Scientists read evidence in tree rings, ancient coral, and bubbles trapped in ice cores; they have concluded the Earth is warmer than it has been for at least a millennium (Pearce, 2006). More dramatic climate change is predicted for the

  • Science and Skepticism Climate Change

    He even goes so far as to claim that if global warming does occur, it will be a positive thing. Higher temperatures would be positive for agriculture and forests. He believes that higher temperatures will actually cause sea levels to drop, and wraps up his interview with the cheery optimism that everyone appreciates warmer weather. Wigley isn't quite as upbeat. He points out that because uncertainty is a built in

  • Media if 911 Had Not Happened Do

    Media If 911 had not happened do you think the Summer of the Shark would have become the Year of the Shark? If not, what do you think the next big story would have been? (search news sites and other online references to find other news stories that could have been big, but were overshadowed by 9/11) The term "summer of the shark" has become a joke to refer to the way

  • Media Coverage of the 2012

    One can be certain that many millions of dollars will flow through the hands of right wing fundraisers like Karl Rove into attack ads against Obama's reform legislation, called "Obamacare" by many who oppose it and even by some who have embraced it. On the subject of public health, in the National Public Radio blog on campaign spending (Kramer, 2010), the reporter interviewed Peter Stone with the Center for Public

  • Media and Conflict the Existence of a

    Media and Conflict The existence of a pro-business, pro-government bias led to ineffectual journalistic coverage of U.S. unemployment during the period leading up to the 2008-2009 recession. In what has come to be known as the Great Recession because of its comparability to the Great Depression, the U.S. unemployment rate reached historic highs. The magnitude of the recession was such that economists and policy-makers should have been better prepared to manage

  • Bosch Company and Social Media the Bosch

    Bosch Company and Social Media The Bosch Company appears to have a strong and comprehensive presence within the world of social media. This is crucial as social media is a truly powerful and invasive tool that can be used to build relationships with new customers and strengthen already existing relationships with old customers. "Building a social strategy takes time and careful attention, but the point is: you need one. Many

  • Environment the 11th Hour Film Global Warning Climate

    Environment The 11th Hour (film): Global warning/climate change impacts all of humanity, and therefore it is not a local but a global concern that requires multidisciplinary intervention (general point made throughout film). Weather and climate issues have been in the mainstream media, and events are happening more frequently (beginning of film). Climate change can be framed as a matter of national security, and there may be "environmental refugees," (middle of film). The rate of decline

Read Full Essay
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved