Why are the Media Failing Canadians on Energy Knowledge?
- Sep 13, 2019 6:07 pm GMT
- 1842 views
I recently wrote this article for a Canadian energy industry audience - but I believe the message is valid everywhere. The energy industry gets a lot of negative press, but much of that - particularly in oil and gas - arises from poorly-researched reporting, and the tendency of the media to publish clickable, green-sounding press releases without adequate review or commentary.
And here are some followup thoughts:
So the day after I share my analysis of media posting energy stories that do not tell the public a balanced story, out comes the Financial Post (a Canadian national newspaper) writing about a study by the Rocky Mountain Institute (https://rmi.org/). RMI's mission is to "transform global energy use to create a clean prosperous and low-carbon energy future".
A worthy goal, but one that makes the reader wary of their impartiality.
The headline reads "Natural gas-fired power plants will get crushed by wind, solar by 2035: study". But what did the headline and story miss? Read page 30 of RMI's report. I'll summarize with a more accurate headline considering page 30: "Clean energy proponents generate models suggesting that wind and solar generation may be more economic as marginal additions to regional grids".
In other words, you can add renewable capacity marginally, but you can't build a power grid with it. Shouldn't that be part of the story?