The Climate Council is an independent non-profit organisation funded by donations from the public. Their mission is to provide authoritative, expert advice to the Australian public on climate change with the belief that our response to climate change should be based on the best science available. The Climate Council was formed following the abolition of the government-funded Climate Commission in 2013 leaving Australia without an independent authority on climate change.
In September 2015, the Climate Council launched a brand new initiative – The Climate Media Centre. The Climate Media Centre (CMC) is a nimble and reactive media relations hub, which aims to connect journalists with a wide variety of spokespeople and case studies on climate change and to provide them with timely and relevant commentary on the issues. The CMC plans and executes strategic communications that personalise and localise the human and community impacts of climate change, seizes upon critical moments as they arise and synchronises voices to achieve a greater impact. The Climate Media Centre was created following extensive research, conversations and brainstorming both within the Climate Council and with key individuals in the climate movement, journalism and industry experts over many months. Based on these conversations, a real need was identified to fill the gaps that were found.
As the CMC is still in its early stages, performance management and evaluation is an area which is still in the nascent phase. As such, only preliminary data exists for evaluation. However, the underlying structures and principles for continued monitoring, reflection and benchmarking are in place to ensure that the CMC is able to consistently improve its performance. While there are a number of key players within the climate sphere helping to shape the narrative and move public opinion, based on the Climate Council’s extensive social media and online presence and calibre of report production, they have strong evidence to suggest their voice has been highly influential in helping shape this debate. In particular, The Council’s push for consistent, effective message on extreme weather has undoubtedly been a significant influence on the shift in people linking climate change and extreme weather.