Reporting extreme weather and climate change: a guide for journalists

Extreme weather events, such as heatwaves, heavy rainfall, storms and droughts, are becoming more frequent and stronger in many parts of the world as a result of human-caused climate change. However, not all events are becoming more likely, and changes are uneven across the world.

These events often have widespread impacts on society, including the loss of crops and farmland, destruction of property, severe economic disruption and loss of life. Following an extreme event with severe impacts, a great deal of public interest is generated in its causes. Increasingly, the dominant question is: “Was this event caused by climate change?” This guide is intended to help journalists navigate this question.