By Faith Chimutsa
THE Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Monica Mutsvangwa last week told media practitioners from across the country that they have a role to play in reporting climate change issues in Zimbabwe, the region and whole of Africa.
Mutsvangwa who was represented by the Ministry’s Chief Director, Dr Jonathan Gandari said the Government is upscaling efforts to combat climate change and one of the effort is equipping journalists with the right tools.
The Minister’s sentiments came while she was launching a book which examines the Media Perceptions on Climate Change in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“Through the collaboration of numerous ministries like the Ministry of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry and the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, the Government is upscaling efforts to combat climate change, which is now in our midst and threatens Zimbabwe’s and the Worlds socio-economic well being,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
Mutsvangwa said the book treats climate change and its engagement with the global and regional seriousness it deserves.
“It is a testament to the critical role that the media play in shaping global understanding of one of the most significant challenges facing humankind and, in particular, our part of the world,” added Mutsvangwa.
Climate change is an existential threat to the planet and communities, particularly in Southern Africa, where small-scale agriculture, wildlife conservation, and tourism are essential economic activities.
“Despite the critical role that the media can play in educating the public, media coverage of climate change in SubSaharan Africa has lagged behind global trends. This is precisely because our parts of the world face so many challenges that governments in the region are trying to solve on different fronts,” she said.
The event saw various stakeholder coming on board, assessing and sharing on technical areas the media can focus, clarify and simplify for the benefit of citizens globally.
Climate change affect all sectors of the economy and the human race and well being of the flora and fauna. Due to climate change, the ecosystem and biodiversity was affected.
Media professionals in Southern Africa were encouraged during the launch to take up creative and innovative approaches and work together with the Government to raise awareness about the climate change greatest challenge of our generation.
Climate change has been widely recognized as a significant global catastrophe as it threatens to alter the natural environment, disrupt the well-being of society, and deter economic development, making climate change mitigation imperative to reduce any further deterioration in the climate system.