Posted on Wednesday June 04, 2014
Wednesday July 06, 2016
India, TV Newsroom,
In spite of the fact that environment has
become an extremely grave and sensitive issue over the years not only in
India but across the globe, Indian television news channels, an
acclaimed feature of the electronic media, have still not impressively
taken up the cause, says a report released by CMS ENVIS Centre on the
eve of the World Environment Day.
The dearth of environmental coverage is
certainly not due to unavailability of visual material or lack of
conflict; but because the TV channels apparently go by the policy “why
bore people with country’s efforts with regard to environmental
protection when they can be entertained instead,” said a media release
about the study.
While pointing at the non-priority status
of environmental news and issues in the television newsrooms, the report
expressed concern over limited knowledge of reporters that, many times,
leads to environmental catastrophe.
“The stories suffer content limitations,
typically providing little qualification or support from scientific
data, making vague references to the scientific communication, and
emphasizing sensationalist aspect,” the report said.
As part of its study, CMS ENVIS Centre
undertook regular analysis of the primetime, between 7 PM and 11 PM,
news content aired by six widely viewed television news channels of
India, during the period from 2009 to 2013. The channels chosen for the
study included DD News, Aaj Tak, CNN IBN, NDTV 24X7, Star News (Now ABP
News) and Zee News.
Year-wise analysis of content revealed
that news on politics, sports, entertainment and crime had maximum
coverage while less than one percent of the total airtime was devoted to
issues like environment and wildlife.
In 2009, as the study found, the coverage
on environment was only 1.53% and news on politics was 20.36%. In the
year 2010, the coverage of sports news was 17.93% against 1.29% for
environment news. Since 2011 to year 2013, politics remained dominant
while environment news coverage was on sharp decline since 2009. It was
found that the media hardly focused on environmental issues such as
agriculture, weather, natural disaster and wildlife, in the last five
As environment plays a vital role in
keeping the earth suitable for human civilisation, news and issues
related to it need to be given required importance and adequate space by
the media as display of its responsibility.