Climate Change and Urban Citizens: The Role of Media in Publicising the Conservation of Green Spaces and Mitigation of Air Pollution

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Abstract

Urbanisation has become a challenge as the urban population grows while cities’ land areas, amenities, and green spaces have remained relatively unchanged or even declined. While urban areas are growing, the link between humans and nature is fading. Increasingly, cities are being affected by climate change impacts and so, the role of media in providing updated and correct knowledge to the public is becoming more valuable. Based on this theoretical ground, the research evaluated two printed Iranian newspapers’ functionality in informing the public on Tehran climate based on two main themes of air pollution and greenery spaces, spanning seven years (2007–2014). The paper evaluated the tone, style, and outline of messages publicised by the press media to explore the following questions: Which types of news are dominantly conceptualised as the significant debates and concerns on Tehran’s climatic issues? Who is mainly writing about Tehran’s climatic issues? Is the public being informed effectively on the surrounding arguments and issues by reading newspapers? As such, five self-descriptive indicators were developed: ‘Layout’ (Title, Subject, Content), ‘Message’ (Public Awareness, Educating, Alarming), ‘Contributor’ (Columnist, Researcher, Authority), ‘Spatiality’ (Local, Provincial, National, International), and ‘Allocated space’ (10% to 100%). A text analysis of Persian newspapers using a Structured Query Language (SQL) was employed to extract data. It was found that the news articles mostly covered public awareness, followed by alarming messages on climate. The findings highlighted the critical role of researchers in generating scientific news while encouraging media for disseminating more educating messages on climate change in urban areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-232
Number of pages14
JournalConservation
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Mar 2022

Keywords

  • Tehran
  • climate change
  • green space
  • air pollution
  • newspaper
  • SQL

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