U.S. Media Reporting of Sea Level Rise and Climate Change: Coverage in National and Local Newspapers, 2001-2015

Jul 27, 2016 | All Categories, Reports

We turned our attention to the news media to see how much reporting on sea level rise has occurred in comparison to climate change from 2001-2015 in four of the largest and most prestigious U.S. newspapers—The Washington Post, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and The Wall Street Journal—and four local newspapers in areas of high sea level rise risk: The Miami Herald, Norfolk/Virginia Beach’s The Virginian-Pilot, Jacksonville’s The Florida Times-Union, and The Tampa Tribune. We find that media coverage of sea level rise compared to climate change is low, even in some of the most affected cities in the U.S., and co-occurs in the same discourses. Yet, differences in the proportion of sea level rise to climate change reporting between local and prestige national newspapers reveal emerging sources of community-focused information. Since 2012, the ratio of sea level rise to climate change coverage is generally higher in local publications than in the national prestige newspapers. Download the Report Here.