It’s not just the money that is leaving the room as reality bites, the chattering classes are not chattering about it so much either. The New York Times closed their Green Blog earlier this year, which covered energy and environment. Seven reporters and two editors were moved into different roles. Did that matter? Seems so.
Think Progress tells the sad story:
The decision was met with disbelief and consternation by many, although readers were promised that The Times’s environmental coverage would be as aggressive as ever, and that the decision was purely structural.
It’s always about “seeming” and not about doing isn’t it?
So much for “structural”, now there are 30% less stories:
Maxwell T. Boykoff, who tracks media coverage of the environment at the University of Colorado, reported to Sullivan that The Times published just 247 print articles that prominently featured climate change between April and September of last year, In 2012, there were 362 such articles during the same time period – that’s a decline of about one third.
Furthermore, in that six-month period since the environment desk closed, there were only three front-page stories in which climate change was the main focus, compared with nine the year before.
The NY Times is just one of many cutting down on climate change related stories as I noted in The day the Global Warming death spiral began. That global trend continues as measured by the Carbon Capture Report. This graph includes all mentions of “climate change” so it includes skeptical articles too.
“This page summarizes all English-language monitored mainstream and social media coverage worldwide of Climate Change”
Milestones came and went
In the second half of 2013 we’ve had the fanfare release of the once-every-five-years AR5 report (as well as the more comprehensive and accurate NIPCC report) as well as the usual yearly two week junket. You might notice those small blips on the graph.
The cause is declining in popularity, but we’re still at the stage where the major players are pretending to go along — “it’s only structural” — and saying how much they are concerned even as their actions suggest the opposite. Look for the next shift where people don’t bother pretending.
One day people will rush to declare that they never really believed it.
POST NOTE The NY times itself admits the Green blog did not have a high readership.
“Times editors emphasized that they were not abandoning the subject — just taking it out of its silo and integrating it into many areas of coverage. The changes were made for both cost-cutting and strategic reasons, they said, and the blog did not have high readership”