23 Nov 2011
Fazila Farouk, executive director of The South African Civil Society Information Service (SACSIS) opened the SACSIS/Friedrich Ebert Stiftung roundtable discussion on "The Media and Climate Change."
The event sought to examine how the South African media is reporting on climate change in the run up to COP17, the United Nations climate conference taking place in Durban from 28 November to 9 December 2011.
SACSIS has an interest in how the media reports on critical development and socio-economic issues as it seeks to contribute to building a strong democracy in South Africa based on an informed citizenry.
SACSIS' interest in public interest journalism stems from the fact that it is a social justice organization concerned about whether the media resonates the aspirations of the majority in South Africa that are predominantly poor.
In her opening remarks, Farouk argued that the poor are disproportionately affected by climate change.
The roundtable discussion took place on November 11, 2011. Keynote speakers at the event included: Brendan Boyle (Editor, Daily Dispatch), Sue Blaine (Environment and Development Editor, Business Day), Prof. Herman Wasserman, (Deputy Head of the School of Journalism at Rhodes University, Bobby Peek (Director, Groundwork) and Saliem Fakier (Head of the Living Planet Unit at the World Wildlife Fund and SACSIS columnist).