Communicating uncertain climate risks

Note to NSF: It isn’t the method of communication, it’s the message itself. See the latest Gallup Poll to see how global warming aka climate change has come in dead last for environmental concerns.

The authors of a recent Perspectives piece in the journal Nature Climate Science say it is not enough to intuit the success of climate communications. They contend the evaluation of climate communication should be met with the same rigor as climate science itself. Here, someone uses the 220 megapixel HiPerWall display at the University of California, San Diego to discuss 10 time varying Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change simulation runs. Credit: Falko Kuester, California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2), University of California, San Diego

From the National Science Foundation

In wake of recent shifts in public opinion, researchers analyze climate change communication

Despite much research that demonstrates potential dangers from climate change, public concern has not been increasing.

One theory is that this is because the public is not intimately familiar with the nature of the climate uncertainties being discussed.

“A major challenge facing climate scientists is explaining to non-specialists the risks and uncertainties surrounding potential” climate change, says a new Perspectives piece published today in the science journal Nature Climate Change.

The article attempts to identify communications strategies needed to improve layman understanding of climate science.

“Few citizens or political leaders understand the underlying science well enough to evaluate climate-related proposals and controversies,” the authors write, at first appearing to support the idea of specialized knowledge–that only climate scientists can understand climate research.

But, author Baruch Fischhoff quickly dispels the notion. “The goal of science communication should be to help people understand the state of the science,” he says, “relevant to the decisions that they face in their private and public lives.”

Fischhoff, a social and decision scientist at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and Nick Pidgeon, an environmental psychologist at Cardiff University in the United Kingdom wrote the article together, titled, “The role of social and decision sciences in communicating uncertain climate risks.”

Fischhoff and Pidgeon argue that science communication should give the public tools that will allow them to understand the uncertainties and disagreements that often underlie scientific discussion. He says that understanding is more likely to happen when people know something about the process that produces the conflicts they hear about in the press.

“Communications about climate science, or any other science, should embrace the same scientific standards as the science that they are communicating,” says Fischhoff. He says this is crucial to maintaining people’s trust in scientific expertise.

“When people lack expertise, they turn to trusted sources to interpret the evidence for them,” Fischhoff says. “When those trusted sources are wrong, then people are misled.”

Fischhoff and Pidgeon propose a communications strategy that applies “the best available communications science to convey the best available climate science.” The strategy focuses on identifying, disclosing and when necessary reframing climate risks and uncertainties so the lay public can understand them easily.

“All of our climate-related options have uncertainties, regarding health, economics, ecosystems, and international stability, among other things,” says Fischhoff. “It’s important to know what gambles we’re taking if, for example, we ignore climate issues altogether or create strong incentives for making our lives less energy intensive.”

Key to effective communications is what the authors call “strategic organization” and “strategic listening.”

Strategic organization involves working in cross-disciplinary teams that include, at a minimum, climate scientists, decision scientists, social and communications specialists and other experts.

Strategic listening encourages climate scientists, who often have little direct contact with the public, to overcome flawed intuitions of how well they communicate. Strategic listening asks scientists to go beyond intuitive feeling and consider how well they communicate by using systematic feedback and empirical evaluation.

“I think that it is good for scientists to be in contact with the public, so that they can learn about its concerns and see how well, or poorly, they are communicating their knowledge,” says Fischhoff. “That way they can do a better job of producing and conveying the science that people need.”

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Fischhoff’s research on science communication is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Decision Risk and Management Sciences program.

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Andrew30

“They contend the evaluation of climate communication should be met with the same rigor [mortis] as climate science itself”
Does that means that they are going to make up and evaluate their own lies and not just rely on the old dead lies from climate scientologists.

Latitude

If they had told the truth about “uncertainties” fifty years ago, and stuck to it…
…they would not be in this mess right now
Of course, then, neither would we…………………;-)

Jaypan

What a waste of time and money. We need best communication science to convince people about BeSt climate science … how impressive.

sigh

“they contend the evaluation of climate communication should be met with the same rigor as climate science itself.”
Mission accomplished! Woo, that was easy, wasn’t it.
This entire article is a simply a large pile of nonsense that translates to “the proles don’t believe us, so obviously we failed to adequately factor in their stupidity when tailoring our message.”

David L. Hagen

For a glimpse into the actual uncertainty in climate science see:
Judith Curry, Reasoning About Climate Uncertainty – Draft
Don Aitken, An essay on the current state of the climate change debate
See related posts at Climate, Etc.

Dena

The warming camp outspend the skeptic camp by 10 to 1. And they are not getting their message out?

Willis Eschenbach

Yeah, I read that. It was an interesting piece, acknowledged some of the problems, but again missed the boat completely.
They still think the issue is bad communications … someone ought to explain to them about the credibility problem of the Boy Who Cried Wolf.
Because clearly they think the Boy’s problems would be simply solved by giving him a bigger megaphone and some instruction in speaking methods and framing and better communication strategies …
w.

Douglas DC

Good one, Willis….

Matt G

It’s not a communication problem, but a awful/bad science problem. Repeating constant failures sticks up like a sore thumb and the public increasingly notice the planet not responding to far from reality predictions. Repeating the same mantra with angry and arrogant tone is a sure sign of something not going to plan. Good science speaks for itself, is noticed and is not required to be shoved down peoples throats on a daily basis. When this happens it is a sign of the product not reaching the right qualities, so desperation in sale of the product occurs. The public increasingly catch on to contradictions, bad product and normally when something like this happens the warning signs appear in big scary letters. ‘KEEP AWAY’

Douglas

‘Few citizens or political leaders understand the underlying science well enough to evaluate climate-related proposals and controversies,” the authors write, at first appearing to support the idea of specialized knowledge–that only climate scientists can understand climate research.’
———————————————————————
What a load of tosh this whole article is. In effect it is saying that people can’t see through BS. Well Baruch Fischhoff and Nick Pidgeon you better learn to understand that people are well versed in seeing through BS – it has been a means of human survival for aeons. Your argument is a bit like the people who profess to have the ONLY hotline to god. So stop wasting your time.
Douglas

George E. Smith

“Communicating Uncertain Climate Risks; Like, there’s Certain Climate Risks ??
The essence of risk is uncertainty.
And we do know the level of uncertainty. The IPCC standard fudge factor is 3:1 ; or nominal +/- 50% for those statistically minded, and needing a spread.

Matt G

In the above post, should be not generally a communication problem. There is one exception and that is the alarmists often calling us deniers and hiding away from the true science that both divides actually disagree with. This prevents progression of science and stagnates debate. We know climate changes, the planet has warmed, but the issue is how much from natural factors, environmental changes and human CO2. Whether these will or will not contribute enough to cause humans serious problems in future.

BC Bill

Or maybe you just can’t fool all of the people all of the time.

Follow the money. As long as funding and research grants are exclusively pro global warming alarmists with no balance for the converse view. The opinions of those who would challenge or question those funded findings will be labeled as Sceptic not understanding the science.

HaroldW

“When people lack expertise, they turn to trusted sources to interpret the evidence for them,” Fischhoff says. “When those trusted sources are wrong, then people are misled.”

Certainly they aren’t admitting that the IPCC et al. might have misled?
And, am I the only one to suspect that the “risks and uncertainties” are going to lean heavily on the risks and not so much on the uncertainties?

SSam

Guess they need someone to read that gibberish scrawled on the wall..
“Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin”

Billy Ruff'n

Climate science communications had yet to overcome three major obstacles:
1. The climate science “community” was co-opted by the political left and enviro-greenies as the means to their desired ends. Average folks recognize this and because they really don’t relate well to either the far left or extreme green, they tend to discount the message.
2. The “settled science” tells us that when a gas thats 0.04% of the atmosphere becomes 0.8% of the atmosphere, the world as we know it will end. And the predictions of end of the world are based on computer models built by the group that were dumb enough to be co-opted by the left & greenies. Sorry, but for average folks this is a bridge-too-far.
3. Because they can’t really explain the science and the uncertainties associated therewith, the climate science community spends most of its time and research dollars dreaming up one catastrophe after another. Problem here is that “Chicken Little” and “Boy Calling Wolf” aren’t the best of spokesmen — they’re fairy tales.
And, I forgot….there’s this little thing called Climategate.
I think their communication problem would be helped if people stopped paying attention. Maybe they should just keep quiet for a while.

Lawrie Ayres

As many of you know the Australian Government has employed scientists to promote the need for a carbon dioxide tax. They have assessed the need for better communication of the accepted science ie that of the IPCC. It is also imperative that alternative scientific views be banned. That my friends is propaganda.

Tom

The only skill required to foist climate propaganda onto people, is the ability to lie with a straight face. They’ve tried celebrities, scholars, and politicians but nobody really believable. For some odd reason, they just can’t make the lies stick. Hmmm, maybe they need to try animals in pathetic situations… No, that didn’t work either. Geez, this is a toughie.

Mike

Willis Eschenbach “… someone ought to explain to them about the credibility problem of the Boy Who Cried Wolf. ”
You should read the story. The wolf was real. The boy failed to communicate the need for practice drills.

L Nettles

Paraphrasing someeone else’s tweet.
You know what would improve communication about CAGW, If it was true.

Tom.B

From a British Think Tank
Warm Words :How are we telling the climate story and can we tell it better?
“ behaving as if climate change exists and is real”
“To help address the chaotic nature of the climate change discourse in the UK today, interested agencies now need to treat the argument as having been won, at least for popular communications. This means simply behaving as if climate change exists and is real, and that individual actions are effective. The ‘facts’ need to be treated as being so taken-for-granted that they need not be spoken.”
http://www.ippr.org/publicationsandreports/publication.asp?id=485

Donald Mitchell

What a wonderful idea. Please do communicate – publish your original data, publish the methods by which it was massaged, publish the code for your computer models, maybe even publish those emails that the original whistle blower either missed or did not have access to. I can assure you that it will be carefully read and widely discussed

Eric (skeptic)

“Uncertainty” is an interesting way of putting it, almost implying there is some calculated probability of a bad outcome. But there is no such thing. There are runs of climate models which produce different kinds of garbage depending on what garbage is fed in. The climate models predicted increased AO, but lately it is more negative so they are blaming that on lack of ice. What, the climate models didn’t know about lack of ice?
Genuine uncertainty exists in exogenous factors like volcanoes and solar. But those are things the climate scientists never talk about because they simply don’t care about real uncertainty (that includes cooling), only fake uncertainty from CO2 feedback scenarios like permafrost melting and other century or millennial time scale factors that don’t matter today.
Climate models are completely inadequate. They don’t adequately model weather especially increases in convection (which is not modeled at all). The problem is not uncertainty but that the models are wrong and can’t predict anything with any level of certainty above a coin toss. As a simple example, it is either 100% certain that the world will warm 5C by 2100 or it is completely impossible. There is no uncertainty in the fundamental nature of weather and climate, only very coarse models that can’t explain or predict anything.
Uncertainty is a canard. It is a red herring. It is made from fake probability distributions from model runs, or worse, it is invented from “climate expert” opinion surveys. All those nice gaussian-looking probability distributions for temperature or sensitivity? All fake, not based on any applicable empirical data (paleo data is useless since the transition from dry ice age to wet interglacial is driven by water vapor, not CO2). All the long right tails with 10C of warming? Fake. The 5% “probability” that sensitivity is equal or less than a modest 2C? Fake. There is either 100% certainty of modest warming (apart from exogenous events) or 0%. There is no probability distribution derived from anything other than nonscientific methods.

Anything is possible

Four basic problems :
1) You can’t lie about the weather. Everybody experiences it every single day of their lives. If you try and tell them the “world is warming” just after they’ve experienced (as we have in the UK), the coldest December in living memory, they’re going to laugh in your face. Quite right, too.
2) A lack of confidence in long-term forecasting. If you can’t say, with any certainty, what the weather will do next Tuesday or next month, how the heck to you expect people to believe you when you tell them what it will do in 2060. Play the “weather is not climate” card (which is wrong anyway since climate is merely a long-term statistical expression of weather and, by definition, climate cannot change unless the weather does) all you like, but people (sensibly) are simply not going to buy it.
3) Over-hyping the problem. Anybody with a grain of common sense knows that the MSM goes out of its’ way to sensationalise everything. It’s what they do. It’s what they HAVE to do. Most people lead very busy lives and, at best, put aside about 5 or 10 minutes to grab their news through sound-bites and headlines. At this point the MSM has to grab their attention, because without that attention they will wither and die.
The consequence of this is that when any climate scientist speaks to the media, the media tune out all the qualifiers and uncertainties. All they are interested in is the absolute “worst-case scenario” and how many people might conceivably die as a consequence. If they can tell their readership it will all be their own stupid, selfish fault so much the better.
Needless to say, none of these climate-related “horror scenarios” has ever yet come true, but it is the climate scientist, not the media who were merely “reporting what he/she said” who are made to look completely divorced from reality.
4. Given that I don’t give a stuff about polar bears (who would eat me for lunch as soon as look at me) and take the attitude that every thing in nature exists because of its ability to adapt to climate changes far in excess of the trivial warming that has supposedly been bought about by a 40% increase in atmospheric CO2, that my ageing bones react increasingly badly to cold weather and that I am facing an astronomical gas bill for the “luxury” of keeping my house at a temperature of 18C for the last 4 months, why should I embrace the prospect that the globe will continue to warm slightly with anything other than enthusiasm?

Dave Worley

Folks with social disorders often complain that others just don’t understand them.

GixxerBoy

Nice analogy, Willis.
My opinion is shifting. I used to think that the Climate Catastrophe camp just didn’t ‘get it’: that they failed to see the issue was a lack of convincing content, not merely shortcomings in the communication. They were so discombobulated by their messages losing traction that they scratched their heads in genuine wonder. They fervently believe CAGW theory to be true, so they were puzzled that others could not see it to be so.
Now I’m not so sure. It strikes me as remarkable that a large group of intelligent people cannot see that the whole CO2-caused runaway greenhouse theory is so shot full of holes. I mean, it is, isn’t it? How on earth could anyone with a reasonable IQ look at the uncertainties and reliance on assumptions (climate models, for example), the findings that diverge from the theory (e.g relative tropospheric temperatures, decade-plus divergence between CO2 levels and temps), the shaky data (station inadequacies, UHI, Dendro and other proxies), proven scientific ineptitude (Stieg, IPCC, et al) and the clear evidence of at least some manipulative practices in things like peer review and the hockey stick, then say “Hear what you’re saying, but it makes no difference.”
Rather than give pause, the instincts of most climate catastrophists has been to waffle on about not getting the message through. This is absurd. If there was genuinely sound scientific back-up, the climatologists would be very confident. As in anything, knowledge is power, and being master of the facts gives one supreme confidence: ” Go on – ask me a question. Any question.”
If I am questioned by anyone, no matter how well-prepped and hostile, on a subject in which I am expert, I’m confident. Because I know the facts, and have a passion for the subject, I enjoy taking the enquirer through the knowledge. It’s important to pitch the information at the right level for them. But if you’re a master of the topic, that’s easy.
That’s just human nature, right?
But this doesn’t square with the CAGW alarmist camp at all. They’ve got some smart people in their tent, but there’s a shrill hostility to the way they respond. Or they deflect from addressing the questions raised and do things like this – blame the lack of traction on communication shortfalls.
I used to think the majority of climate alarmists believed in CAGW theory. They had arrived at it though their study and endeavours and were possibly suffering from a dose of cognitive dissonance. I’m beginning to conclude that a much larger group than I thought know that the man-made CO2 greenhouse theory is by-and-large rubbish. But they don’t care. They know it won’t hold up to serious scrutiny, but they want the ‘outcomes’, so they stick behind it as though it were incontrovertible.
I’m not one for conspiracy theories, but I am struggling how else to understand this collective case of Emperor’s Clothes Syndrome.
The end result, naturally, is that the climate alarmists get marginalised by their weird behaviour and failure to acknowledge reality. Clinging to their modelled world of runaway catastrophe, where everything that goes wrong is down to Global Warming, they begin to look more and more odd.
So my question to WUWTers is, do you think they are just holding out in the hope of bringing their grandiose schemes for global agrarian communism to fruition? (Thinking it will then be too late to turn back.) Or do you think they genuinely believe in the wacky science of climatology?

Theo Goodwin

‘But, author Baruch Fischhoff quickly dispels the notion. “The goal of science communication should be to help people understand the state of the science,” he says, “relevant to the decisions that they face in their private and public lives.”’
The people understand the state of the science. They understand that, beyond Arrhenius’ hypotheses about CO2, there is no science. From Arrhenius’ physical hypotheses, one can predict at worst that warming from CO2 will be no more than one degree centigrade. In other words, there will be no dangerous warming even if the worst case scenario occurs.
Pro-AGW scientists have no science. They have no physical hypotheses that can be used to explain and predict the climate “forcings,” especially changes in cloud behavior, which they say will increase the effects of CO2 and cause dangerous warming. All that the pro-AGW scientists are able to do is extrapolate so-called forecasts from old data and graphs. Extrapolation from data is not prediction and is not science. It does not rise to the level of explanation and prediction. It cannot because it does not employ physical hypotheses.
Because they have no science, pro-AGW scientists often switch to the so-called Precautionary Principle. They argue that the risks are so great that we must commit to CO2 mitigation policies even though we do not have the science that will permit us to predict the effects of CO2. Yet their strategem contains a hole that one could drive a 747 through. The only reason we have to fear harm from increasing CO2 is that they claim that their science predicts such harm. Yet they have no science, as explained above. One should not worry that that CO2 poses harm when there is no science to support the claim that CO2 poses harm.
As for their computer simulations of climate, which they erroneously call “models,” the general public knows that computer simulations cannot rise to the level of physical hypotheses and cannot be used for prediction. Obviously, the computer simulations are being used by pro-AGW scientists because they have no science.
It is time for spokespersons for the pro-AGW position to come clean. When they refer to the science that supports their claims of harm from CO2, they are referring to data and graphs but not to physical hypotheses. Everyone should call the bluff of these spokespersons. Demand that they show their physical hypotheses and the hypotheses’ records of confirming true predictions. Do not take a so-called “expert’s” word. If they can make the predictions, they can provide the hypotheses and the interested layperson can make the predictions too.

Pamela Gray

I’m beginning to think a plethora of “No thanks, I already have a savior”, “No solicitors allowed”, and “No Trespassing” signs are the only way to get through to these people. And I’m not religious! So read my lips.

hunter

Every effort the AGW opinion leaders and believers spend thinking about or working on the idea that it is the packaging of their message that is the problem is a wasted effort.

Theo Goodwin

Mike says:
March 29, 2011 at 5:42 pm
“You should read the story. The wolf was real. The boy failed to communicate the need for practice drills.”
Close, but no cigar. He failed to communicate that he was calling practice drills without warning and whenever he so desired.

John M

You should read the story. The wolf was real. The boy failed to communicate the need for practice drills.

Right Mike, if it makes you feel better. On the other hand, you can recognize the moral of the story like everyone else does.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Boy_Who_Cried_Wolf

Frank K.

“Here, someone uses the 220 megapixel HiPerWall display at the University of California, San Diego to discuss 10 time varying Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change simulation runs. ”
What an expensive and totally useless stunt!! I wonder how much the “HiPerWall” cost the poor taxpayers of California…

Tom T

Very few people in the public understand the theory of relativity, almost everyone believes it. The problem for the AGW crowd is the general public does understand climate change.

jeez

Hype er wall

Wilky

Global Warmists: “The sky is falling, the sky is falling!!!”
Public: “No it’s not.”
Global Warmists: “The sky is rapidly descending, the sky is rapidly descending!!!”
Public: “No it’s not.”
Global Warmists: “The sky is getting closer, the sky is getting closer!!!”
Public: “No, it’s not!”
Global Warmists: “What, are you deaf?”

Douglas

GixxerBoy says: March 29, 2011 at 5:54 pm
Nice analogy, Willis.
[My opinion is shifting. I used to think that the Climate Catastrophe camp just didn’t ‘get it’: that they failed to see the issue was a lack of convincing content, not merely shortcomings in the communication—-
So my question to WUWTers is, do you think they are just holding out in the hope of bringing their grandiose schemes for global agrarian communism to fruition? (Thinking it will then be too late to turn back.) Or do you think they genuinely believe in the wacky science of climatology?]
————————————————————————–
Well GixxerBoy. I have also come to the conclusion that they (the ‘Climate Scientists’) are caught up into a much bigger and more grandiose scheme of things. They really have no say but are forced to maintain this charade to the bitter end, whether they like it or believe it, or not.
That ‘bigger thing’ is, of course a form of world government. I know this sounds paranoid and so one is reluctant to countenance the idea but when one sees the EU in action with its agenda for control of all of Europe that ultimately renders the powers of its member ‘sovereign’ states impotent, then one is inclined to think that it is possibly true. And then its bigger brother the UN is there doing a similar thing but ultimately on a grander scale.
And they nearly pulled it all off at Copenhagen but for ‘climategate’. They (the ‘scientists’)are gradually running out of ‘oxygen’ but their ‘masters’ are rolling ahead – no sweat. Just look at the latest EU pronunciation regarding no cars in cities. Totally undeterred by the lack of evidence regarding ‘global whatever it is now’. The agenda is bigger and the scientists mere pawns who have served their purpose. They are irrelevant now. The science doesn’t matter – the story has served its purpose. As they say in politics ‘never waste a good crisis.’
So, I hate to say it but you might be right.
Douglas

Latitude

Fischhoff’s research on science communication is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Decision Risk and Management Sciences program.
The Decision, Risk and Management Sciences program supports scientific research directed at increasing the understanding and effectiveness of decision making by individuals, groups, organizations, and society. Disciplinary and interdisciplinary research, doctoral dissertation research, and workshops are funded in the areas of judgment and decision making; decision analysis and decision aids; risk analysis, perception, and communication; societal and public policy decision making; management science and organizational design. The program also supports small grants that are time-critical and small grants that are high-risk and of a potentially transformative nature (see Grants for Rapid Response Research (RAPID) and EArly-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER).)
=============================================
Moooooooooo……………………….

Bob Barker

If the earth’s atmosphere can be made dynamically unstable, why does the earth still retain a very substantial atmosphere over billions of years and in the wake of many destablizing events. For me, they have not made the case.
When they make the case, communication will take care of itself. I am not holding my breath on this one.

GixxerBoy has it. The key is the word “shrill”. Any time you hear religious or political activists screeching louder and louder and getting hotter and hotter, you’re hearing the characteristic resonance of Cognitive Dissonance.
It’s the neural equivalent of a dry bearing.

Camasinian

My mother always told me that once you tell a lie, you would eventually get caught. The reason being that you had to lie over and over again in order to support the first lie. You would eventually forget what you had lied about and get caught up in your own web of deciept.
This seems to be what is happening with the climate debate, or lack thereof. They have distorted the data to support their social agenda and it has finally caught up with them.

ferdberple

That there is a repeated pattern in human history of predicted catastophe. The prediction requires that we (government) must act now to avert the disaster. None of the predictions were later found to be true. The “must act now” action ended up making things worse.
The key point of the prediction is the “must act now”. A sales gimic, to panic a buyer into taking a bad deal.
Starting with Hansen, we have been hearing “must act now” for what, 30 years? Surely we have passed the point where we “must act now”, and thus there is nothing to be gained by acting now.
Just over a year ago in Copenhagen, we heard “the world must act now”. We didn’t, so now it must be too late. Otherwise, what we were told at Copenhagen was a lie. If we had to “act now” at Copenhagen, there can be no reason to act now, as it must now be too late.
This is what people understand. Only one time can it be true that you “must act now”. These second time you say it, the first time must have been a lie, so why should they trust you the second time.

Latitude

Winter Arctic ice coverage tied for lowest ever recorded
Since the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo., began tracking sea ice three decades ago, only 2005-06 saw as little ice during a Northern Hemisphere winter — 5.65 million square miles, a tie with this winter.
Read more: http://www.adn.com/2011/03/29/1781404/winter-arctic-ice-coverage-tied.html#ixzz1I2pw4toK
========================================
Tied means there has been no change in the past 6 years….
Since they can’t hype warming, they are trying to hype tied.
This is their communication problem.

ROM

I thought the public’s understanding of the climate change issues is about as good as it ever will be when that same public’s level of comparative understanding of many other contentious issues is considered.
A large section of the public has made up it’s mind and another large percentage is well on the way to making up it’s mind on the global warming / climate change issue and they are all steadily trending towards full blown skepticism.
I also suspect that there is a considerable percentage of the public who may still list global warming / climate change as a serious concern but who do so more for politically correct reasons amongst their peer group than for any firm commitment as to the way they feel about the subject.
In that case all the extra pro AGW tax payer funded propaganda will now make very little or no difference to the public’s beliefs as the public has already had a two decade very long exposure to the pro AGW extremist hype.
That public is now just switching off like they do with long running over exposed and increasingly nauseous commercial advertisements when the climate activists who are acting more and more like a quasi religious cult continue to try to force their beliefs onto an increasingly skeptical and cynical public.
The climate activists seem psychologically and grossly incapable of seeing any good aspects to global warming such as higher food production due to rising CO2 levels, greater bio-mass production across the entire planet, a wetter planet overall and many other really significant advantages for life on Earth with higher CO2 levels and higher global temperatures.
They just continue on with the same sad old story of an oncoming catastrophe that blames mankind for any so called global warming / climate change and so by implication blames every individual person for being responsible for the always forecast oncoming but never realised climate change catastrophe.
Nobody likes it when such opprobrium is heaped on them even indirectly and subconsciously for extended periods and that resentment at being constantly branded as being personally responsible, as evil and as destroyers of the climate and the planet by the more fanatical climate activists is at the heart of a lot of the resistance and increasing skepticism to the AGW / climate change catastrophist’s claims.
And the slowly dawning realisation that the climate warmista activists intend that the ordinary citizen is going to have do without many formerly reliable and necessary services and do without many of the small pleasures of life, to suffer significant drops in their already precarious living standards and to pay and pay for their climate sins if the warmista activists get their way.
And cynically knowing all the while that those same climate scientists and activists who are promoting this tax payer funded propaganda drive on behalf of their beliefs will not and do not intend in any way to reduce their own standards of living.

Douglas

And another thing – I hate having to provide for and worry about your children’s children.

Paul Vaughan

“One theory is that this is because the public is not intimately familiar with the nature of the climate uncertainties being discussed.”
…as if those advancing these theories are themselves “intimately familiar with the nature of the climate uncertainties”.

Paul Vaughan

“strategies needed to improve layman understanding of climate science”
Suggestion for noble educators:
Develop understanding first (i.e. before attempting to teach).

Patvann

“Environmental psychologist”
??????
Are you freakin kidding me?!?!?!

Mike Bromley

“A major challenge facing climate scientists is explaining to non-specialists the risks and uncertainties surrounding potential climate change”
What I can’t figure out is how these people became specialists in trying to explain a double-negative, or worse, a potentially uncertain double-negative. I can’t imagine what their home life consists of.

Stephan

“Climate Change” will not normally be observed by humans, they only live max 100 years. Most “climate change” occurs over thousands of years. Weather events may occur over 7-11 years, probably due to solar events.