The media has the power to hold powerful business interests to account but a recent study by academics from Oxford, Sanford and New York has claimed that it is failing to do this with respect to meat eating and its contribution to climate change. Assessing four mainstream newspapers in the UK & US, the study found that over 12 years, only 4% of articles that referenced climate change or global warming also mentioned animal agriculture, a number far out of proportion to the sector’s emissions. The study also examined the nature of the coverage, including who bore the brunt of the blame for agricultural emissions. Consumers were overwhelmingly the group held most responsible, more than businesses and factory farms combined. In other words, the problem of agricultural emissions is largely presented as the fault of individual meat-eaters, rather than those who produce, sell and regulate meat products. With public awareness of the link between animal food consumption and climate change low, it’s clear the media could be doing more to help
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