I am writing to ask for your help, advice and thoughts regarding coverage of population issues by the media.
It is my impression that the volume of news media coverage of population issues has increased significantly in the last few years. The food and energy crises of 2008 and 2011, political instability in various parts of the world, continuing loss of the biodiversity that makes the planet habitable, and a growing volume of material coming from population activists have helped to raise awareness among journalists that we may have overgrown the capacity of the planet to sustain our numbers and lifestyles.
Despite this progress, there is still a lot of inaccurate and biased coverage of population issues, both by the media and by institutions that favor continued population growth.
A clear example of this problem is how the US Census Bureau and the media presented the results of the 2010 Census – by focusing on percentage growth terms. Experiencing a 9% growth rate in the last decade, the US population situation was characterized by Robert Graves, Census Director, as follows: “The percentage growth this last decade…is thus the second lowest of the past century.”
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