Scientists don’t usually play into dramatics, but earlier this month The American Association for the Advancement of Science practically shouted from the rooftops about the dangers of climate change. If they had been shouting about something sensational, perhaps the news cycles would have covered the story non-stop. But instead, scientists find themselves in the unenviable position of trying to force people to care about what may be the biggest issue facing humanity. With climate change threatening everything from food to water ways, why is it so difficult to get people to care?
Image via Tim J Keegan
Admittedly, scientists have been talking about climate change for years, and not all of it has fallen on deaf ears. But the general consensus is that climate change is real and it is caused by humans, which makes it all the more perplexing that the US, the UK and other countries seem so unwilling to address the issue. In fact, the UK recently got a new environmental secretary who is proud of his ignorance of environmental science.
But politicians aren’t the only ones dithering on doing something. Too often people refer to the issue as the “climate change debate,” suggesting that there is still some sort of misunderstanding about the very existence of global warming. At the same time, there is a push by those with a vested interest, such as the infamous Koch brothers, funneling shocking amounts of cash into blocking any progress and changing public opinion. And while a majority of Americans want to address climate change, there is still a strong movement to deny the whole thing.
All of this means that it is an incredibly difficult – and incredibly important – battle to fight. Even if we somehow mustered the will to make drastic changes now, we could only slow the progress of climate change, not stop it. That’s a hard message to sell to people who are politically and personally motivated to ignore it. And that means that the climate change deniers have already won.
Via The Guardian
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