Thongchai Thailand

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF CLIMATE DENIAL

Posted on: April 20, 2020

bandicam 2020-04-19 14-43-27-818

[LINK TO THE HOME PAGE OF THIS SITE]

 

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF DENIAL  

CLIMATE SCIENTIST KATHARYN HAYHOE EXPLAINS 

I Went to a Climate Change Denial Conference. It Made Even Less ...

  1. FEAR OF CHANGE:  I think the underlying cause is fear. It’s the fear that the world is just changing too quickly, that people who have been sort of at the top of the heap for a long time are feeling like they are being shoved to the back of the line. And anything that talks about change, whether it”s immigration, whether it’s government solutions for clean energy, I mean we’ve been using coal since the middle ages, what’s wrong with it? Anything that is new is seen as a threat to the established. 
  2. THE SELF DEFENSE MECHANISM: They could say “I don’t want to make these changes”? I see the science, I agree with the science, but I don’t want to change policy based on it. Why don’t they just do that?  That would be the honest thing to do. And there are people who actually do do that, but for a lot of people the self defense mechanism kicks in.
  3. HIDING A BEHIND SCIENCY SMOKESCREEN:  99.9% of the climate denial I see is actually a solution aversion, but the solution aversion will arrive cloaked in either a sciency or a religousy sounding smokescreen. In other words “it’s just the natural cycle, it’s the sun, God is in control.
  4. FEAR OF GOVERNMENT CONTROL:  But when you dig down, anywhere from 30 seconds to a minute, on their own initiative people will say, “well I don’t want to fix this problem because it means government control, I won’t be able to drive my truck, I won’t be able to do my job, China’s going to take over the world.
  5. THE DEFENSE MECHANISM KICKS IN: But psychology comes into play because if they say “It’s a real problem, and it will hurt the poorest people in the world, but I don’t want to fix it”, that makes them the bad guy. And they don’t want to be the bad guy. They want to be the good guy, so they throw up this defense mechanism to explain why they are good and smart in rejecting this problem. 
  6. KNEE JERK OPPOSITION TO ENVIRONMENTALISM:  To many on the extreme right, anything that looks like environmentalism is something from the extreme left and perhaps even socialism or communism. That image of environmentalism kicks in and the climate change crisis is seen in that light and therefore vilified and opposed.  
  7. A WEAKNESS IN SCIENCE EDUCATIONParticularly so in the extreme right of the political spectrum we find a suspicion of anything that affects them directly and has to do with science. A weakness in science education makes science arguments suspicious and possibly malicious. 
  8. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF FUNDING:   Large anti-environment organizations like CFACT and the Heritage Foundation, funded by fossil fuel interests such as Exxon and the Koch Brothers, can easily sow the seeds of doubt in a scientifically weak older conservative population in their campaign against environmentalism and specifically so against the climate crisis. Essentially, what we see here is that the fossil fuel industry is fighting back by proxy .

 

 

Chart: Where Most Climate Change Deniers Live | Statista

The Australian quantum theory of climate denial | Dana Nuccitelli ...

Dealing in doubt: how big oil funds climate denial

 

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