, 14 tweets, 8 min read Read on Twitter
A terrific discussion about environmental journalism today with @cynthiabarnett @LukeRunyon @noahgshannon @AbrahmL, moderated by @gburton. Luke joked at the beginning that the panel was probably, from left to right, 'moving from most optimistic to most pessimistic.' #Journalism
Lots of insightful points in the conversation, which ranged from a discussion of optimism/pessimism in reporting on climate change to the idea of a board game designed around managing water. Going to share a few of their comments.
.@cynthiabarnett praised @jfleck: "When I’ve done reporting on water in New Mexico, I’m always amazed at the number of people who talk about John Fleck as someone who helped change the ethos of the Albuquerque community, which now uses half the water that it used in the mid-90s."
.@cynthiabarnett: "And so, he – and I think we – can very much be part of that ethic, that changing ethic. But I think it requires reporting on solutions as much as that tragedy narrative." @jfleck
In reporting on the Colorado River, @LukeRunyon said he's found "that solutions frame is what people are really fascinated with." #ColoradoRiver
.@noahgshannon talked about takeaways from his superb story The Water Wars of Arizona nytimes.com/2018/07/19/mag…
And referring to the panel's title ('Can We Handle the Truth?'), @noahgshannon said: "It seems that we can handle the truth but that we may be ignoring it in convenient ways and allowing certain people and constituencies to kind of slip through the cracks." @Ten_Across
.@AbrahmL: "Whatever the solutions are that we’re talking about, whether it’s insurance solutions or water management solutions or long-range planning, whatever… We’re not getting there fast enough. And I personally feel quite freaked out." #climatechange
.@AbrahmL: "But I think that’s also separate from what our responsibility is as communicators and as members of the news media… Our best opportunity now, optimistically or pessimistically, is to really talk to people about how it’s affecting and changing their lives."
.@AbrahmL: "I think we are at a turning point in terms of people’s receptivity to environmental news. ... Now people increasingly want to understand what’s happening to them, and they’re eager for explanation."
.@cynthiabarnett: When I write, I have an audience in mind that I think of as the caring middle. These are people who do care once they understand. ... The really important group to touch is this group in the middle. #writing
.@gburton said he's seen tremendous public response to reporting that reveals the consequences of action/inaction. "If you tell the consequences of these stories to people, they respond really in a positive way."
.@LukeRunyon is brainstorming a water-themed board game: "I’ve always really wanted to do a board game. This whole collaborative management of water systems is just begging for a really cool board game, and collaborative board games are all the rage right now."
"Local news is really the place where the great impact can happen." –@cynthiabarnett
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