The Climate Change Gap: U.S. media fiddle while Earth burns (Extra!)

Reports on climate change look very different depending on whether you’re getting your news from British media or U.S. ones. (In the subscribers-only print edition, so you’ll need to order Extra! to read it – or look for it on Nexis if you have an account there.

If 2006 was the year that the issue of global climate change broke through into greater public consciousness–thanks in large part to Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, plus books like Elizabeth Kolbert’s Field Notes from a Catastrophe–2007 could be the year that it becomes old news.

Between February and May of this year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a joint project of the United Nations and the World Meteorological Organization, issued a series of three comprehensive reports designed to present the scientific evidence for climate change, as well as the likely consequences and how the most catastrophic effects can be avoided. By the end of it, “Live Aid” organizer Bob Geldof could be moved to harrumph on hearing of Al Gore’s planned “Live Earth” concerts to raise consciousness of the issue: “We are all fucking conscious of global warming.”

How conscious you are, though, likely depends largely on where you live–and how you get your news…