Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Wind Farms and the Australian Media

Journalisnt, a media blog, was kind enough to publish a piece I penned on wind energy and the Australian media landscape. Click here to have a read - a short extract is below. 




On the 15th of March, 2011 the Telegraph posted an article claiming “Offshore wind farms are one of the main reasons why whales strand themselves on beaches, according to scientists studying the problem”. Somewhat unremarkably, the original research does not mention wind farms. The paper is concerned mainly with responses of beaked whales to sound stimuli at differing frequencies. The author of the original research added a comment to the article, calling it “an abomination”. The article was eventually retracted (a copy of the original can be found on an anti-wind website) and a correction published.

The article serves as a compact illustration of the extent to which a media outlet may go to criticise wind energy. There also seems to be an impetus to wrap these falsehoods in an elated, ironic sneer – could the technology espoused by environmentalists be damaging various other green efforts, such as global warming or whale conservation? The previous examples seem to correspond largely with outlets bearing some partisan editorial bias on heavily politicised issues, such as climate change, renewable energy and environmentalism. A more bipartisan and widespread problem exists regarding wind energy’s representation in the media, related to safety and health.


1 comment:

  1. Speaking of whales - this is how such baseless information has carried on in the media, appeared today: