Press and Climate Action, a Powerful Alliance

The vital collaboration between climate activists and journalists spurs effective action within communities

By Thais Lopez Vogel

Every year on May 3rd, the United Nations observes World Press Freedom Day. For 2024, the theme was dedicated to “The importance of journalism and freedom of expression in the context of the current global environmental crisis.”

Last week we accepted the invitation to join the event held by the Association of Venezuelan Journalists Abroad, APEVEX, to hold a virtual conference on the subject. It was an appropriate occasion to review the powerful alliance between climate activists and reporters in the face of the greatest challenge facing humanity in the 21st century.

As an organization based on science and data, we have a common language with journalism; we work with facts. That common ground has allowed us to understand each other effectively when it comes to bringing news about this situation to the public.

Through their ability to reach large audiences, media outlets are an invaluable vehicle for helping the public better understand the challenges we face.

It is essential to explain the details of climate change clearly and reliably so communities can take effective action. We cannot expect them to act if they do not understand what is happening. We need the media’s support to amplify and multiply this message.

Also, the interaction with journalists has taught us to improve the way we expose communities to the message. A valuable lesson we have learned is the importance of highlighting the human factor of what we are experiencing.

Behind every report, gripping, high human-interest stories that will enrich the journalistic narrative and empower the audience with insights into our collective future.

Each statistic and graphic portray people whose lives are being impacted in definitive ways. It is essential to convey these experiences so readers, listeners, viewers, and followers can get an accurate picture of what we are going through and motivate action for change.

Although some people do not place climate change at the top of their list of concerns, these perceptions change when it is explained to them that its effects have a major impact on other core areas of human life, such as the economy, health, and migration.

While coverage of the climate issue is steadily increasing, it is an appropriate time to invite the media to increase the presence of this information. There are countless compelling stories that deserve to be told.

Windows of information to the public is key to changing our perspective on climate change: it is not only about saving the planet; it is about preserving our civilization and ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.

This is a call to action that requires the commitment of all of us, including the media, in the search for meaningful and lasting solutions.

Finally, we would like to express our appreciation on behalf of VoLo Foundation for the increased media coverage we have received in recent years.

This attention demonstrates the increased awareness in the media and large audiences of the need for information regarding climate change.

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