Posted on

Climate Endgame – How to Research and Communicate Extreme Climate Risks?

Firefighters in front of a wall of flames, wading through shallow water

by Felix Schaumann

“Are we screwed?”, “How bad is it gonna get?” – these are the questions that I most frequently get when I mention that I am in climate science. Newspaper coverage of a recent perspective article in PNAS seemed to suggest that we are actually headed towards a global catastrophe with potential extinction and that we know dangerously little about it: “Climate endgame: risk of human extinction ‘dangerously underexplored’ – Scientists say there are ample reasons to suspect global heating could lead to catastrophe”, or “We Are Not Freaking Out Enough About Climate Change”.

This media coverage has led other researchers to criticize the underlying article for being too gloomy – they argue it scares the public and overemphasizes the likelihood of catastrophic climate change. Continue reading Climate Endgame – How to Research and Communicate Extreme Climate Risks?

Posted on

Nachhaltigkeit geht alle an – drei Beiträge zum Thema Nachhaltigkeitskommunikation

Cover ComSoc 2_22

(English summary below)

Die aktuelle Ausgabe der Zeitschrift Communicatio Socialis versammelt diverse interessante Beiträge zum Thema Nachhaltigkeitskommunikation. Das Plädoyer darin: Nachhaltigkeit geht alle an, und auch Journalismus und Wissenschaft können sich nicht länger auf einen distanzierten Beobachterstatus zurückziehen.

Die Zeitschrift ist leider nicht frei lesbar. Für alle, die keinen Zugang zum Journal haben, sind hier drei Beiträge verfügbar – siehe hinterlegte Links:

„Plädoyer für eine bescheidene Weltverbesserung. Transformativer Journalismus und transformative Kommunikationswissenschaft“ (Michael Brüggemann)

„Nachhaltigkeit kultivieren. Öffentliche Kommunikation über Umwelt, Klima, nachhaltige Entwicklung und Transformation“ (Franzisca Weder)

„Transformation und Wiederverortung. Herausforderungen angesichts Klimanotstand und Artensterben“ (Torsten Schäfer)

Zur gesamten Ausgabe (Paywall): Communicatio Socialis (ComSoc), Jahrgang 55 (2022), Heft 2

English summary

Continue reading Nachhaltigkeit geht alle an – drei Beiträge zum Thema Nachhaltigkeitskommunikation

Posted on

Comparing Coverage of Climate Change Across the Global North and South

by Valerie Hase & Daniela Mahl

India and Thailand are among the countries affected most by climate change. Still, we know little about how news media in these nations cover climate change. In a recent study, we wanted to change that and asked: How and how much do countries from the Global North and South cover climate change?

Continue reading Comparing Coverage of Climate Change Across the Global North and South

Posted on

How to talk about climate change – a collection of thoughts and helpful input for non-experts

by Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

When did you talk about climate change the last time? And when did you do so with family and friends? Results from our surveys show that on the one hand, the amount of people talking about climate change in their daily lives is rising steadily (see Guenther et al. 2020, in German), but on the other hand, a significant share of people never touch the topic in their conversations. For many, it is a somewhat awkward topic, leading to conversations about guilt and depressing visions for our future.

Rising share of conversations about climate change in daily life, source: Down to Earth data 2015/2019.

rising share of climate change conversations 2015-2019

In this post, I’ll summarize why it is a good idea to talk about climate change, even if you are not a climate expert, and which strategies mostly lead to a constructive conversation. Continue reading How to talk about climate change – a collection of thoughts and helpful input for non-experts

Posted on

After Lunch Posts: Talking Climate Change with Hans von Storch

by Michael Brüggemann

One of the many privileges of holding a Professorship at the University of Hamburg and being involved in the Cluster of Excellence, which unites researchers from different disciplines around the issue of climate change (see CLICCS website ), is that you have the opportunity to meet and have lunch with highly inspiring and thought-provoking people such as Hans von Storch.

Hans von Storch captured by Raimond Spekking (via Wikimedia Commons)

Continue reading After Lunch Posts: Talking Climate Change with Hans von Storch

Posted on

Let’s focus on the short-term benefits of long-term climate protection!

by Michael Brüggemann

A new study by Samset et al. (2020) in Nature Communcations finds that even under strong and sustained mitigation efforts, it will take the climate system until mid-century to demonstrate a discernible cooling response. Unfortunately, we must accept and live with the frustrating fact that the global climate system is a rather gigantic tanker ship that will change its course only several decades after humanity has decided to pull the emissions steering wheel into another direction. Yet, we should also think about what may motivate immediate action to reduce the risk of climate collapse in the far future. Rather than only fixating on the nebulous, future benefits of present-day climate protection, I would suggest that communicators should focus on highlighting positive short-term side effects of climate protection measures.

Source: Pixabay

Continue reading Let’s focus on the short-term benefits of long-term climate protection!

Posted on

A Short Personal Guide to Climate Change Conversations

by Eduardo Alastrué de Asenjo

As natural scientists, we hopefully learn multiple concepts about uncertainty throughout our education and research, and, at some point, the time will come when we need to put them into practice. This post comes from the necessity of a first approach to assemble some of the multiple guidelines and recommendations that we receive regarding climate change communication. I am not referring particularly to the topic of communication in newspapers or TV, but to a much more mundane request. In this case, my goal is to have a structured set of rules or steps that a natural scientist working on climate change can follow when trying to address a day-to-day conversation on the topic.

Picture taken from Pexels. Author: Oleg Magni

Continue reading A Short Personal Guide to Climate Change Conversations

Posted on

Warum das Zwei-Grad-Ziel ein (Kommunikations-) Problem ist

von Michael Brüggemann und Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

Thermometer 2 Grad mehrIn seinem Kommentar zur Klimapolitik hat sich der Innenpolitik-Chef der FAZ kürzlich schwer vertippt: Er schreibt, es gäbe „die Verpflichtung, bis 2050 die Erwärmung deutlich unter zwei Grad zu senken“. Dabei ist es natürlich so, dass sich die Zwei-Grad-Grenze, so wie sie die Staatengemeinschaft 2015 in Paris beschlossen hat, auf das Jahr 2100 bezieht. Fehler können passieren und gehören zum journalistischen wie zu jedem anderen Handwerk dazu – genauso wie eine öffentliche Korrektur des Fehlers, mit Publikation möglichst an gleicher Stelle.

Dass ein solcher Fehler bei einer der führenden Qualitätszeitungen vorkommt, hat aber möglicherweise tieferliegende Gründe: Die Zwei-Grad-Grenze bietet keine Anleitung und wenig Anreiz für gute Klimapolitik in der Gegenwart. Continue reading Warum das Zwei-Grad-Ziel ein (Kommunikations-) Problem ist

Posted on

‘Tis the season again: COP25 in Madrid has started

by Fenja De Silva-Schmidt

The last month of the year has begun, Christmas decorations are taking over the cities, and another climate conference has started.COP25 Logo

From December 2-13, COP25 will take place in Madrid. The conference was overshadowed by organisational issues: Continue reading ‘Tis the season again: COP25 in Madrid has started

Posted on

Climate Communications Awards – You Can Vote!

Edit 8 November: The vote is already closed now and the winners have been announced yesterday: they are two young women with their impressive poetic video “Rise”, which you can watch here.

—-

The British climate communication organisation Climate Outreach has initiated the Climate Communication Awards to recognise outstanding individuals worldwide “who are driving public engagement with climate change”.

The three nominees for the “Climate Change Communicator of the Year – People’s Choice Award” are

We think this is a nice occasion to appreciate engagement in climate change communication and have a look at other people’s work in the field.

Members of the general public are now invited to vote for one of the nominees, which you can do easily here. The vote closes already on Wednesday, 6 November 11:30pm BST – so be quick to participate. The nominee with the most votes wins.