Monday, 21 September 2009

Is psychology the answer to global warming?

In my book Ecologic, I look at the way that what's apparently good for the planet isn't always the best thing to do, while the ideal solutions are sometimes anything but obvious.

When we try to sort out our priorities for tackling global warming, the natural inclination is to either invest in ways of reducing emissions - better household insulation or making it easier to avoid flying, for instance - or look for opportunities to actively oppose climate change - for example with big sunshades or seeding the ocean with iron.

But there is something else we ought to be investing in, as is brought out in this interesting article in New Scientist. It argues, successfully to my mind, that we ought to give more consideration to the psychology of climate change. Almost all the lack of action is down to psychology and its interplay with politics. If we can change the way individuals and governments see the risk involved and what it means for us all, there's a hope that climate change will be taken seriously. Which, in the long term, will benefit us all.
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