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UK news media companies take on climate change for Earth Day

By Hannah Ohm Thomas

Newsworks

London, United Kingdom

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On April 22 every year, the world comes together to recognise Earth Day. As governments, businesses, and individuals continue to set goals to cut their emissions, it is up to every one of us to challenge our behaviours and inspire action.

To celebrate the day, I put together some of the most impactful campaigns and activities focused on climate change that our national news brands have been working on over the past months and years. The highlighted campaigns are only a snapshot of the amazing work newspapers are doing to inspire readers to play their part in bringing down emissions. Additionally, they published an amazing array of articles, resources, studies, graphics, and opinion pieces telling the story of our climate emergency.

Daily Express’ “Green Britain” crusade

Editor-in-chief Gary Jones revolutionised the title’s climate change narrative with the launch of its “Green Britain” campaign earlier this year. “Join our Green Britain revolution” read the front page of the newspaper in February, which asked readers to sign a petition to boost the tax system to fight climate change.

Daily Mail: ECO2 magazine

The news brand recently published issue two of its ECO2 magazine. It provides readers with a “fresh spring guide to sustainability” featuring eco-solutions and green figureheads such as Prince Charles and Richard Curtis. The magazine is carbon-neutral, biodegradable, and produced bi-annually.

Evening Standard: “Future London”

The “Future London” campaign aims to make London the best place on Earth. The campaign’s “Clean Air” project tackles one of the city’s biggest challenges — air pollution — by raising awareness of alternative modes of transport and air quality. In the coming months, it will highlight the city’s need for a greener recovery.

Guardian Weekend’s climate special

The title vowed to change its language when talking about climate change to better describe its urgency. In line with this, it published a dedicated climate edition of Guardian Weekend featuring a conversation with two icons, Greta Thunberg and U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, along with 100 ways to make a difference.

The Telegraph’s real-time climate tracker

By the time you finish reading this paragraph, 10 rugby pitches of forest will have been destroyed. The news brand’s real-time data tracker provides insight into the difficulties the world is facing and our impact on the planet, giving readers a very genuine sense of urgency.

The Times: “Clean air for all”

Designed to help save lives, the campaign is putting pressure on the government to update its Clean Air Act. It recently resulted in a landmark judgement that ruled Ella Kissi-Debrah’s death was due to the failure to reduce pollution levels to legal limits. Updates can be found on its newly launched Times Earth digital channel.

Looking abroad, The Guardian, Daily Mirror, and i have partnered with Covering Climate Now, calling on newsrooms across the globe to address the need for greater climate change coverage.

Commercially, brands are leveraging the trusted and engaged audiences of news brands to deliver reliable content about the climate emergency in the forms of ads, branded content, podcasts, and cover wraps.

About Hannah Ohm Thomas

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