Exploring Why Many Americans Don’t Believe Climate Change is Caused by Humans (Despite Trusting Climate Scientists) – PBS.org
Can’t Find What You’re Looking For?
Tell us what you’re looking for in the Study Hall and get responses from us, and you’re fellow students. Get help with exactly what you need so you can get this assignment out of the way and move on to better things (or the next assignment).
“In the 1990s, Michael Ranney started informally asking people what they perceived to be the world’s biggest problem. He hadn’t set out to tackle environmental issues—he was first trained in applied physics and materials science before turning to cognitive psychology. But time and again, he heard “climate change” as an answer.
Ranney had also noticed that while the scientific community had converged on a consensus, the general public had not, at least not in the U.S. The Climategate controversy in late 2009 over leaked e-mails between climate scientists and Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe’s insistence that anthropogenic global warming is a hoax are just two examples of the widespread conflict among the American public over what is causing the planet to warm.
Ranney and his team say that a “wisdom deficit” is driving the wedge. Specifically, it’s a lack of understanding of the mechanism of global warming that’s been retarding progress on the issue. “For many Americans, they’re caught between a radio talk show host—of the sort that Rush Limbaugh is—and maybe a professor who just gave them a lecture on global warming. And if you don’t understand the mechanism, then you just have competing authorities, kind of like the Pope and Galileo,” he says. “Mechanism turns out to be a tie-breaker when there’s a contentious issue.””
PBS article investigating why many Americans do not believe global warming is caused by humans – despite data showing Americans trust scientists.
- Why Doesn’t Everyone Believe Humans Are Causing Climate Change?
- November 19, 2014
Need the full citations? Request them in the Study Hall and we will respond with them as quickly as possible. You can also request more research, or get help with other parts of your paper.