UNEP Assists African Journalists to Cover the Climate Change Story do, sep 22, 2011

Bringing the latest climate change science and research on forests, agriculture, food security and carbon trading to African journalists was the focus of a media workshop at the Highway Africa Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, organised by the United Nations Environment Programme.

Participants at the UNEP media workshop, 'Covering the Climate Change Story', in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Caeri Dunnell)

Nairobi, 22 September 2011 - Bringing the latest climate change research on forests, agriculture, food security and carbon trading to African journalists was the focus of a media workshop at the Highway Africa Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, organised by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

With the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP17) set to take place in Durban, South Africa, in just over two months, the UNEP workshop aimed to provide journalists set to cover COP17 with cutting-edge research, relevant case studies and emerging climate issues to support them in reporting on climate change in meaningful ways to their audiences.

The workshop, entitled Covering the Climate Change Story, placed a strong focus on the impact of climate change on economies, human health and sustainable development.

Held on 17-18 September at the Highway Africa Conference - Africa's biggest journalism conference - the workshop was attended by around 50 print, radio, online and television journalists from a host of countries, including South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Mali.

One of the workshop sessions, 'Africa Adapts', focused on community case studies from the UNEP/UNDP project 'Climate Change and Development - Adapting by Reducing Vulnerability' (CC DARE).

CC DARE aims to help some 11 African countries capitalize on the economic opportunities of climate change adaptation, through projects such as a rainwater harvesting project in the Seychelles, or techniques to combat floods and erosion in Mozambique.

The UNEP workshop also explored current trends in carbon trading, renewable energy and other low-carbon investment projects on the continent.

Many journalists attending the workshop expressed difficulty in accessing the latest research on climate change, particularly information on the links between climate change, health, jobs and sustainable development, which they said would better equip them for reporting on the Durban negotiations and beyond.

"The need for resources and documentation for journalists to understand climate change is crucial", wrote one workshop participant. "We want to be informed about the issues and also how to cover the issue as a journalist."

For more information, please contact: Bryan Coll, UNEP Newsdesk on +254 207623088 or E-mail: bryan.coll@unep.org

 
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