Actions and beliefs behind climate change stance

Earth
A composite image of the Western hemisphere of the Earth. Credit: NASA

Strategies for building support for climate change mitigation policies should go beyond attempts to improve the public's understanding of science according to new research.

The study, published today in Nature Climate Change, found that regarding human-induced climate change, the actions and beliefs of both sceptics and believers could be understood as integrated expressions of self, underpinning specific social identities.

Using an of climate change sceptics and believers living in the US researchers from Monash and other universities measured differences between the two groups in terms of environmental behaviours, emotional responses, national and global identification and a number of other variables.

Monash University behavioural social scientist Dr Ana-Maria Bliuc from the School of Social Sciences said although there was a growing belief in the general public that climate change was real; there was a sharp division in beliefs about its causes, with many sceptical of human-induced change.

"We found the contrasting opinions of believers and sceptics about the causes of climate change provided the basis of social identities that define who they are, what they stand for, and who they stand with (and against)," Dr Bliuc said.

"In making up an aspect of self, these beliefs and emotional reactions can predict for actions that advance the positions of each group."

The researchers also found that part of the group consciousness of each group is anger at the opposing side.

"This finding suggests that antagonising sceptics and increasing their anger towards their opponents is likely to polarise them further, making them more committed to act in support of their cause," Dr Bliuc said.

The researchers suggest the divisions between the two groups are unlikely to be overcome by communication and education strategies alone.

"Interventions that increase angry opposition to action on are especially problematic," Dr Bliuc said.

"Strategies for building support for mitigation policies should go beyond attempts to improve the public's understanding of science, to include approaches that will change the relationship between the two groups."


Explore further

Attitudes to climate change depend on people's sense of belonging to the planet

More information: Nature Climate Change, http://nature.com/articles/DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2507
Related: Nature Climate Change, http://nature.com/articles/DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2537
Journal information: Nature Climate Change

Provided by Monash University
Citation: Actions and beliefs behind climate change stance (2015, February 2) retrieved 23 April 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-02-actions-beliefs-climate-stance.html
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cjn
Feb 02, 2015
FTA:
Strategies for building support for mitigation policies should go beyond attempts to improve the public's understanding of science, to include approaches that will change the relationship between the two groups.

I think the key is finding and proposing viable solutions which are acceptable regardless of the stance of the individual. You want to cut hydrocarbon consumption to reduce CO2 emissions, then make affordable electric/fuel cell/whatever cars that are economically viable and provide the specific utility that is desired (whoever produces an electric or hydrogen fueled pick up or full sized SUV at the price point of an F-150 will upend the market). Residential LED lighting, geo-thermal heating, and solar are great examples of achieving a "green" goal by targeting economics over argument.

Feb 02, 2015
The Netherlands is a good example of a country where the science most always trumps sentiment, even if it's universal. In the US that's "undemocratic", where the bone deep anti-intellectuals think that your right to have an opinion and a voice exists irrespective of your knowledge about the subject. They even scoff at the concept. "Who's knowledge?" As Bill Maher so rightly observed, "You're entitled to your own opinions, but not your own facts". Common paradigms yield common facts are are the basis of society.


The Nederlands are ruled by pseudo scientists, like economists, and is a living hell because of that (what to think about 70 / 80% tax).

Feb 02, 2015
Have you tried to buy an incandescent light bulb lately? It's one thing to promote a "greener" product. If you like it, feel free buy it. Spend your money anyway you'd like. Please don't force me to buy a toxic, mercury-laden light bulb, or pay taxes on the air we breathe. For most of the last 2.6 million years, the usual state of our climate has been major glaciation. Enjoy this brief, inter-glacial warming period while you can. We're still living in an Ice Age.

Feb 02, 2015
I'm starting to believe fundamentalist christians are more dangerous than islamic ones. Sure, ISIS, et al., are terrible but the scope of the damage they can cause is relatively small -destroy a few buildings, cut off a few heads on youtube, etc. However, the damage that fundamentalist christian lawmakers cause affects hundreds of millions of people all over the world. I am psychotically pissed off at a little book of fairytales running our country.

Senator Inhofe is incoming chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. He went as far as to say that man could not be responsible for climate change because only almighty god can change climate. But who cares; the rapture is due any day now.

Terrorists crashed airplanes and killed thousands, and we revile them. This asshole's legislative stroll down fairytale lane could have bad effects reaching millions. And he's doing it all so he can he can live with jesus in a magical fantasy box in the sky after he dies.

Feb 02, 2015
Ugh but it's so hard to be nice. But I guess being nice is more than a simple courtesy.

This isn't even the hard part of the fight, we're probably going to have to start over hauling the meat industry some day to combat climate change, i'm not looking forward to that polical fight. It sounds too funny too conservatives, and everyone loves meat but I will say vegetarian food is still savory if it's done right.

Feb 03, 2015
That's not correct Bill, right now there are at least two articles on the front page explaining why that sentiment is wrong and last week there was an article about how much of that heat is getting absorbed into the oceans. i think you'll find something from every week if you look, because this is something people want to know about.

"The Great Pause is a growing embarrassment to those who had told us with 'substantial confidence' that the science was settled and the debate over," British climate skeptic Christopher Monckton writes in analyzing the pause in warming.


Why should I care what that guy thinks? "British climate skeptic" isn't that prestigious of a position, I bet he doesn't even have to wear pants.

Feb 03, 2015
@Bill589

John Casey's claim to being a White House advisor is based on a single unsolicited letter he sent to President Obama. He is not, nor has he ever been a climate scientist, he has never been a scientist. He has never published in a a peer reviewed journal.. He was not an engineer involved with the Space Shuttle. There isn't even a record of him having an education.

He is a fraud

.http://blogs.brow...p?page=2

Feb 03, 2015
The question shouldn't be about climate change, it should be about "property rights". Every time somebody buys a carbon product and burns it, some of that carbon encroaches upon my property. This method of waste disposal is a clear violation of rights and is a form of socialism. Those who purchase such products should be held responsible for the disposal of waste generated, rather than forcing that task upon others.

Feb 03, 2015
The question shouldn't be about climate change, it should be about "property rights". Every time somebody buys a carbon product and burns it, some of that carbon encroaches upon my property. This method of waste disposal is a clear violation of rights and is a form of socialism. Those who purchase such products should be held responsible for the disposal of waste generated, rather than forcing that task upon others.


Did you think about the CO2 you emit yourself and your wife and kids (because all climate whiners have them)?. Calling CO2 waste is utterly stupid and unscientific by the way.

Feb 03, 2015
The question shouldn't be about climate change, it should be about "property rights". Every time somebody buys a carbon product and burns it, some of that carbon encroaches upon my property. This method of waste disposal is a clear violation of rights and is a form of socialism. Those who purchase such products should be held responsible for the disposal of waste generated, rather than forcing that task upon others.


Did you think about the CO2 you emit yourself and your wife and kids (because all climate whiners have them)?. Calling CO2 waste is utterly stupid and unscientific by the way.

Of course I thought about the CO2 I produce, which comes from the food I eat, which is grown from the CO2 I produce. My carbon doesn't infringe upon your property. Can you account for your property that you have purchased? Should you not be held responsible for what you have bought and paid for?

Feb 03, 2015
Deny this;
It wasn't a crime for CO2 scientists to study their own "POSSIBLE THREAT TO THE PLANET" and NEVER in 34 years put their scientific method aside to say it was "PROVEN" but it is a war crime for you knuckle dragging "believers" to tell children science said it was "PROVEN".
Science "can't" say "proven" but you eager conservative hating "believers" can?
That is why it's called "belief".
Deny that!

Feb 03, 2015
Deny this;
It wasn't a crime for CO2 scientists to study their own "POSSIBLE THREAT TO THE PLANET" and NEVER in 34 years put their scientific method aside to say it was "PROVEN" but it is a war crime for you knuckle dragging "believers" to tell children science said it was "PROVEN".
Science "can't" say "proven" but you eager conservative hating "believers" can?
That is why it's called "belief".
Deny that!

Belief or disbelief makes no difference. What does matter is the respect of property rights. Disposal of waste onto the property of others is a violation of these rights. Nuclear waste, chemical waste, or the contents of ones chamber pot all have been dumped onto others by those that wish to profit at the expense of others. The crime is that socialists continue to engage in such behavior.

Feb 04, 2015
Ekim, all rights are necessarily abridged. That includes your property rights and claims about no one being able to do anything with the atmosphere because air touches something that belongs to you.

I live near a major airport, and many planes, both commercial and private, fly directly over my house. They create noise pollution, drop enough soot that the towel turns black when I wash my car, and there's just the simple fact they are right over my head and property and could crash into it. According to your logic, the airport is violating my property rights. And I'm just guessing here, but based on the way you are expressing your opinions, you probably feel I would be perfectly within my rights to take my property back from the airport at gunpoint.

Sorry you live in a bubble that pops so easily. I do truly hope you don't own any guns, lest we get another news story about some psycho shooting up the mall because a factory 50 miles away is encroaching on your property.

Feb 04, 2015
Ekim, it is also entirely psychotic that you believe that your eating and breathing offset your carbon footprint, ergo, you can sit here and lecture us. I suggest you get rid of your car, job (hey your company has a carbon footprint), computer, smartphone, any food you didn't personally grow... I'll stop the list there. My advice to you, to help you achieve your environmental and property goals, is to go live in a forest somewhere and subsist by sucking moss off of rocks. I don't know what you'll do when air touches your moss rock meal and ruins your property with carbon, but at least you won't be near any of us.

Feb 05, 2015
Ekim, it is also entirely psychotic that you believe that your eating and breathing offset your carbon footprint, ergo, you can sit here and lecture us. I suggest you get rid of your car, job (hey your company has a carbon footprint), computer, smartphone, any food you didn't personally grow... I'll stop the list there. My advice to you, to help you achieve your environmental and property goals, is to go live in a forest somewhere and subsist by sucking moss off of rocks. I don't know what you'll do when air touches your moss rock meal and ruins your property with carbon, but at least you won't be near any of us.

What, did his using the same logic as employed by climate change deniers and anti-socialist despots touch a nerve?

Feb 05, 2015
Ekim, it is also entirely psychotic that you believe that your eating and breathing offset your carbon footprint, ergo, you can sit here and lecture us. I suggest you get rid of your car, job (hey your company has a carbon footprint), computer, smartphone, any food you didn't personally grow... I'll stop the list there. My advice to you, to help you achieve your environmental and property goals, is to go live in a forest somewhere and subsist by sucking moss off of rocks. I don't know what you'll do when air touches your moss rock meal and ruins your property with carbon, but at least you won't be near any of us.

Or I could live on a farm, grow food, grow canola, grow trees, burn biodiesel in my truck , build buildings out of wood. I can capture carbon as bio-char and improve the soil on my land offsetting, I suppose, some of the products that I buy that are carbon intensive during manufacturing, like my computer. The wooden buildings store carbon as does any wooden furniture.

Feb 06, 2015
Sorry you live in a bubble that pops so easily. I do truly hope you don't own any guns, lest we get another news story about some psycho shooting up the mall because a factory 50 miles away is encroaching on your property.

There was a time that the contents of ones chamberpot would simply be cast out the window into the street. Now we have septic tanks and sewage treatment plants. I don't recall that these changes in behavior came about by using violent force. Perhaps I need to reread my history books.

Feb 06, 2015
Or I could live on a farm, grow food, grow canola, grow trees, burn biodiesel in my truck , build buildings out of wood. I can capture carbon as bio-char and improve the soil on my land offsetting, I suppose, some of the products that I buy that are carbon intensive during manufacturing, like my computer. The wooden buildings store carbon as does any wooden furniture.

Of course my neighbor does the same on his farm, except he doesn't burn biodiesel. He sells all his canola instead and burns gas made from the oil on his land. Now some of the carbon from his land now is on mine and he profits from his actions. Which one of us is the socialist?

Feb 07, 2015
I am repelled by the absolute certainty that resembles fanatical ideology more than skeptical science. It looks like science has "left" the building.

Feb 08, 2015
You deniers of science forget that the man forces behind science, are deduction and logic. This causes this so that, a + a = 2a. Deniers of global warming and the science behind the claims are ignoring the point of logic and deduction. If the question is what does a + a = ? you say 2a. If the question is what does a + a + a = ? You would deduce that answer to be 3a. That is science in it's simplest form. It gives you predictive powers. Climate Science gives us that same ability to predict.

We are at a point now where I think it's conclusive that global warming is man made and the cause is from CO2 released from burning fossil fuels. If we all agree on that, then we are 90% there. No if's, and's or but's. If you can recognize Every ~14 GT CO2 will rise CO2 by ~1.0ppm.  50ppm CO2 will rise global temps by ~1C, We call that ballparking, Given vast CO2 from fossil fuels burning, we have a very hot future to look forward to! Very hot indeed.


Feb 08, 2015

...We are at a point now where I think it's conclusive that global warming is man made and the cause is from CO2 released from burning fossil fuels. If we all agree on that, then we are 90% there. No if's, and's or but's. If you can recognize Every ~14 GT CO2 will rise CO2 by ~1.0ppm.  50ppm CO2 will rise global temps by ~1C, We call that ballparking, Given vast CO2 from fossil fuels burning, we have a very hot future to look forward to! Very hot indeed.



You're equating one of the largest systems known to man with a simplistic linear equation and telling us that we don't understand science. That's laughable at best. Climatic modeling is done mostly on the non-linear basis using a lot of math derived from QIT (Quantum Information Theory). QIT is a relatively new field of Mathematics, and it's a sub-set of Large Systems Theory which is only around 30 years old.

Tell me again how I don't understand the "science" involved, because it's mostly math.

Feb 08, 2015
You're equating one of the largest systems known to man with a simplistic linear equation and telling us that we don't understand science. That's laughable at best. Climatic modeling is done mostly on the non-linear basis using a lot of math derived from QIT (Quantum Information Theory). QIT is a relatively new field of Mathematics, and it's a sub-set of Large Systems Theory which is only around 30 years old.
Tell me again how I don't understand the "science" involved, because it's mostly math.

Some of us don't care about the science, only the facts. Fact is people buy carbon only to release that carbon onto the property of others. The effects of this release of waste will always be up to debate, but the act is undeniable. We must recognize as a society that this lifestyle is unsustainable.

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