The Daily Express is fuelling people to hate carbon reduction. That puts doubt into people’s minds – doubt that the planet can ill afford. Encourage advertisers to spend their money in better ways and change these narratives that feed the climate crisis.
The vast majority of us want to live in a safe and sustainable world – and therefore to rapidly counter the climate crisis.
So it’s sad to see The Daily Express, one of the UK’s largest newspapers, using their platforms to stir up resentment towards carbon reduction efforts.
For whatever reason, the paper seems to have embarked on a crusade against ‘net zero’, with a string of sensationalist headlines portraying the term as a malicious threat. Just to pick a few of the dozens and dozens of examples:
– Mad rush for Net Zero makes us a laughing stock around the world, says Esther McVey
– Medieval net zero policies will take the UK back to the dark ages, warns Lord Frost
– Drive for Net Zero is economic suicide, says Esther Krakue
This is in spite of the fact that even the paper’s owners, Reach PLC, have made extensive public commitments to protecting the environment, including by cutting carbon. They proudly (and laudably) announce being on a ‘journey to Net Carbon Zero, [with] targets and metrics’ and ‘a member of the Ad NetZero initiative’.
Whatever the reason for the Express’s anti-net-zero rhetoric, this kind of blanket, misleading, bogeyman coverage sows seeds of public anger and mistrust, muddies the waters about how climate change works and directly contributes to climate denial.
If you’ve ever wondered why people can be so hostile to the idea of protecting the environment (even when it seems clear it would be to their own benefit), misinformational stories like these have a big part to play.
The Express’s attacks on attempts to reduce carbon emissions (net zero) are directly at odds with the stated aims of the paper’s owners – and of many of the companies who fund the Express through their advertising budgets.
For example, look at some of the brands paying to feature in the Express this very week. Each of them has made public statements about their own efforts to reach net zero: