29 Nov 2021
29 Nov 2021
Status: a revised version of this preprint is currently under review for the journal GC.

A physical concept in the press: the case of the Jet Stream

Xavier Fonseca1, Gonzalo Miguez-Macho1, José A. Cortes-Vazquez2, and Antonio Vaamonde3 Xavier Fonseca et al.
  • 1CRETUS, Non-linear Physics Group, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  • 2Department of Sociology and Communication, University of A Coruña, Spain
  • 3Departament of Statistics and Operational Research, Universidad de Vigo, Spain

Abstract. In recent years, science has hardened the discourse on the emergency of global warming, pointing out that the next decades will be decisive to maintain the stability of the climate system, avoiding a cascade effect of events that increase the average temperature above safe limits. The scientific community warns that there are different tipping points that could produce a chain reaction in the global climate. One of them is related to the Jet Stream. But despite the importance of this air current in atmospheric dynamics in the Northern Hemisphere and the changes it is experiencing in the context of global warming, the public is still not familiar with this kind of physical concepts, nor with much simpler others. As concerns about the climate crisis rise, knowledge remains stagnant. To advance in the learning of the science of climate change, in general, and of concepts such as the Jet Stream, in particular, specific scientific communication formats are required that can successfully tackle the difficult task of explaining such complex problems to the general public. These formats should be included in the media because they are the main source for information on climate change and because their characteristics allow taking on the challenge. In this article we present a communication proposal existent in a newspaper published in Spain. We argue that this communication format represents a good model to disseminate climate science, educate readers and even to make physical concepts such as the Jet Stream accessible. We believe that this format conforms to and complies with the enunciation of Article 12 of the Paris Agreement, which calls on the signatory countries to promote education and training on climate change.

Xavier Fonseca et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on gc-2021-34', Louise Arnal, 25 Feb 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Xavier Fonseca, 06 Apr 2022
      • AC3: 'Reply on AC1', Xavier Fonseca, 17 May 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on gc-2021-34', Stephanie Zihms, 25 Feb 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Xavier Fonseca, 06 Apr 2022
      • AC4: 'Reply on AC2', Xavier Fonseca, 17 May 2022

Xavier Fonseca et al.

Xavier Fonseca et al.


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Short summary
In this paper we discuss the instrumental role of the press in informing and educating on the subject of climate science and climate change. We illustrate with an example of a dissemination format called Weather Stories, published daily in one of the most read newspapers in Spain. The particularities of this journalistic format are described with a practical example on how a relatively complex physical concept: the jet stream.