Climate change: Conflict between facts and values

People usually tend to deny climate change for the facts and values that have very little to do with climate science.

Acknowledging climate change involves accepting certain facts. More often, the facts that revolve around climate are repeatedly connected to the values of people. Over the years, it has become clear that we seriously need to change the way we talk about climate change. People usually connect the science of climate change to various causes, commitments, and convictions.

Facts and values behind climate change denial:

Denial arises when climate issue hits us the wrong way. The inner conscience of a person often clashes with the climate argument and coincides with the personal objectives. People usually neglect the reality of the climate crisis in order to maintain their beliefs.

Personality is one of the factors why people are more likely to deny climate change. Demographic factors also show an effect in this denial of the climate crisis. Many people tend to not believe in climate science and holds the opinion that no such thing as climate change and global warming exists.

It is also necessary to understand that there is an important distinction between the denial that is personal and psychological and denial that is institutional and organised. The former involves people who deny the facts to themselves, but the latter involves the denial of facts to others.

Why you shouldn’t be a climate doomer?

A climate doomer believes that climate change is real, but simultaneously they also believe that it’s late now and there’s nothing that can be done in order to protect the environment. Experts believe that people promoting doom and despair, are stealing Generation Z’s future away.

There is another doomer scenario in which the doomer thinks that civilisation is soon to collapse because of changing climate. For protecting our environment, it becomes important for us to not aim higher, but else should focus on global warming of 1.5℃ and 2℃ in the first instance as heat waves, droughts, water stress, more intense storms, wildfires, mass extinction, and warming oceans- all get progressively worse as the temperature rises.

Note: Average is calculated from 1951-1980 land surface temperature data.
Source: University of California (Photo credit: BBC)

If we continue to be a doomer, then till the time we’ll reach 2030, it is possible that we could lose more than 90 percent of our coral reefs. Similarly, insects and plants would be at higher risk of extinction, and the number of dangerously hot days would increase rapidly.

Why half of the Americans don’t think climate change is real?

The poll, conducted by Gallup, shows that more than half of the Americans seem to think that climate change won’t affect them personally. Only 45 percent think that global warming will pose a serious threat in their lifetime, and just 43 percent say they worry a great deal about climate change. 

Results of Gallup Poll

Many Americans perceive climate change as a distant problem. Climate change is affecting us all, but why don’t people in America believe so? The reason is quite simple- the attitude of people on change in climate has shifted recently, majorly because of the politics that is affecting the psychology of people.

Even the President of the United States, Donald Trump, believes that climate change is a hoax. Trump does not think the change in our is real as he counts on the fact that if its cold out there, there’s no crisis known as climate change. Right after the 2016 presidential election, the belief that global warming is happening dropped by two percentage points among all Republican registered voters.

(Photo credit: BBC)

Facebook suspends the account of several environmental organisations:

Recently Facebook has suspended the accounts of several environmental organisations. This was done soon after the company launched an initiative it said would counter a tide of misinformation over climate science on the platform. Environmental groups such as Greenpeace USA, Climate Hawks Vote, and Rainforest Action Network were among those who were blocked from posting or sending messages on Facebook.

Many activists also claimed that hundreds of other individual accounts linked to indigenous, climate, and social justice groups were also suspended for an alleged intellectual property rights violation. Later, Facebook’s spokesperson blamed the system for the restrictions on the groups and said that the company is trying to restore the accounts and contents.

It is being believed that the suspended accounts were of the people and groups who opposed a 670 Km long, Coastal GasLink pipeline for its climate impact.

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