Climate change is “a problem for everyone and everything,” says Catherine Hoho, a meteorologist at the renowned Texas Tech University. To make that clear, we need to communicate the facts and solutions in a different way. “It’s not about the head, it’s about the heart.”
As a meteorologist in orthodox West Texas, Hoho finds himself in a lion’s den. But through her church, neighborhood associations, and social media, she engages in conversations with those who are not really concerned about the climate crisis or who deny science.
In her book Hope for the earth Hoho writes that the gap between climate skeptics and climate activists – and everything in between – can only be filled by talking to each other.
We need to talk not only about how climate change will affect our lives and how they are already affecting us, but also about what solutions are available to prevent the worst effects of global warming.
You write that passing on the scientific facts about climate change to people who do not believe it will not help. That should be a painful insight for a scientist.
“It’s very painful. We scientists believe that facts will set us free. People will take the right action based on facts. But we have been telling people facts for fifty years, and in those fifty years we have produced 70 percent of our CO2 emissions. Must be understood.
We need to talk specifically about the consequences of climate change on our own lives, Hayhoe writes in his book. It’s not so much about the melting of icebergs or the fate of people on the other side of the world as it is about how it affects our hobbies, our work, or our immediate living environment. Whether it’s about the consequences of a growing severe drought for farmers or the consequences of a hot winter for exciting skiers.
“Climate change is affecting our health, the safety of our living environment, the air we breathe and the water we drink. It affects all areas of our lives.”
How can one-on-one conversations lead to the major changes needed to combat climate change?
“I often hear from people that the time to talk is over: now is the time to act. My response to that is: How can people work together without communicating? Show examples of the big changes that have taken place without communicating with people. None. Nothing.”
“Look at how our society has changed in the past. Until the end of apartheid, how did women get the right to vote, to the American civil rights movement. How did those changes come about?”
“It’s not because the prime minister, president, king or CEO of a big company decided that racism should end.
In the age of social media, this is often about bubbles: people around us already agree with us. How do you reach people who think differently about climate change?
“I often hear: ‘Everyone around me is already worried.’ Yes, of course! Even in the U.S., 70% of people are concerned about climate change, and 86% of young people worldwide are concerned. The difference is that no one is actively involved in climate change, only 8% in the US. If it continues, we will never solve the problem. “
“Then why do we need to talk? Usually, it’s about showing people what we can do about it.
“Suppose you start a conversation about wasting energy in the workplace and they’re reducing energy consumption by 15 percent. Or you’re talking to the canteen about reducing food wastage or offering climate – friendly products. Then you make a big difference.”
Your book is called Hope for the earth You also emphasize the importance of the message of hope. But if you go through the latest weather reports you will find a lot of bad news. So how do you stay optimistic?
“When everything goes well, you do not need hope. Hope means it’s important to recognize that things are going badly now and that it could get worse. But hope is about the possibility of a better future, small and uncertain. Be. Opportunity.”
“It’s possible because if we stop using fossil fuels, we’re ending with tens of millions of deaths a year from air pollution. Can deal with problems.
“So, hope is the small chance of a better future, a little light at the end of the dark tunnel we are now passing through. We have to fight as hard as we can because we know the best is waiting for us.”
“That’s why we need hope, but a realistic, rational hope. It starts with saying that climate change is real. It’s serious. It affects us today. But we can still prevent the worst consequences. I know, because I know that knowledge.” Look at the company and the future situation. I know it depends on us depending on what different situations we end up in. Our choices determine the future. “
Prone to fits of apathy. Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Internet advocate. Avid travel enthusiast. Entrepreneur. Music expert.