Americans and climate change : closing the gap between by Daniel R Abbasi; Yale University. School of Forestry and

By Daniel R Abbasi; Yale University. School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

American citizens and weather swap: ultimate the distance among technological know-how And, through Abbasi, Daniel R

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Additional info for Americans and climate change : closing the gap between science and education : a synthesis of insights and recommendations from the 2005 Yale F & ES Conference on Climate Change

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Cutting across beats. The climate issue cannot be adequately covered by one beat, but instead cuts from the political beat to the business beat to the science beat. Given the need for a whole cadre of journalists to be informed on the issue, even within a single news organization, the communications burden is greater. This, again, reinforces the importance of efficiently getting to the gatekeeper presiding over the full organization. ➢ Catch-22. Scientists face disincentives to reach out to the media and need to be trained to do so effectively.

This occurred for climate change in 1988 in the United States, during the worst drought in 50 years and an exceptionally hot summer – punctuated by NASA scientist James Hansen’s testimony to Congress. Unfortunately, later stages of Downs’ cycle also appear to have been borne out, as the costs and threats associated with solving a problem diminish the public’s ardor to undertake remedial action – and finally the public succumbs to relative boredom if not complete obliviousness about the issue that had previously gripped it (see Anthony Downs, Political Theory and Public Choice, Edward Elgar Publications, July 1998).

A global park). ● Shifting the burden of proof so that public expectations of certainty would be conditioned over time to give way to a risk management paradigm. Some have urged that we should go further, beyond the risk management paradigm, which raises its own contentious problems of balancing hard-to-quantify risks and benefits, and toward a precautionary paradigm, which was a crucial underpinning of eventual action on phasing out CFCs that deplete the ozone layer and would be better suited to motivating significant action on climate change.

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