Takahashi (2010) argues the evolution of the media environment, the rise of huge media conglomerates and the nature of media outlets to seek profit maximization have come to dominate, limiting the ability of mass media to truly fulfill its role in democratic societies. Whether we recognize it or not, the media plays a crucial role in our knowledge of what is going on in our local and global communities. In the case of environmental issues and concerns such as climate change, the media is crucial in building public perception. Public support is often necessary for the implementation of important policies, thus making media content a critical component for public and political interactions (Takahashi 2010).
This context provides the framework for the present study. This study is an analysis of media coverage of the proposed road connecting Pucallpa, Peru and Cruzeiro do Sul, Brazil . I use online media sources to focus on the framing of new infrastructure in the Peruvian media. From an analytical perspective, Peru provides an ideal scenario to study infrastructure and development. This is because of the paradoxical context in which the country is situated; with poor and limited infrastructure and an economy highly dependent on natural resources and extractive industries. This is important because the public perception of a road cutting through the Amazon is going to have a great effect on whether or not the highway is actually constructed. If constructed, a well-informed media will have presented the public with important information needed to make well-informed decisions about the path the road will take. It will serve to ensure the road is constructed in a way that causes minimal environmental, economic and social implications while maximizing profit for the historically impoverished Peru.
Paper prepared for the Environmental Studies Senior Seminar/Geography Capstone.
Cassaro, Christine. "Portrayal of the Proposed Pucallpa-Cruzeiro do Sol Interconnection in the Media." Paper for Environmental Studies Senior Seminar/Geography Capstone, University of Richmond, April 2012.