Results of the study show that the term “Climate Change” is too bland to excite people
Story submitted by Eric Worrall
Bryan Walsh, writing for Time Magazine, has published a claim by the Yale Project on Climate Communication, that the term “global warming” is more effective at engaging people’s attention than “climate change”. People apparently associate “Global Warming” with terrifying climate catastrophes, such as melting ice and coastal flooding. See the story here:
“Climate Change”, on the other hand, tends to be associated with unusual, but not necessarily terrifying weather events.
Bryan concludes with the suggestion that environmentalists should consider their use of language when attempting to motivate their audience.
Who knows – perhaps this study heralds the exciting return of the term Climate Change – at least until the next El Niño fizzles.
For example, according to the Yale study, the term “global warming” is associated with:
- Greater certainty that the phenomenon is happening, especially among men, Generation X (31-48), and liberals;
- Greater understanding that human activities are the primary cause among Independents;
- Greater understanding that there is a scientific consensus about the reality of the phenomenon among Independents and liberals;
- More intense worry about the issue, especially among men, Generation Y (18-30), Generation X, Democrats, liberals and moderates;
- A greater sense of personal threat, especially among women, the Greatest Generation (68+), African-Americans, Hispanics, Democrats, Independents, Republicans, liberals and moderates;
- Higher issue priority ratings for action by the president and Congress, especially among women, Democrats, liberals and moderates;
- Greater willingness to join a campaign to convince elected officials to take action, especially among men, Generation X, liberals and moderates.