Saturday, December 09, 2006

Communicating Climate Change

Language, facinating isn't it? 

I named this post communicating climate change as the links are all either directly or indirectly from the Fynmense blog which uses these words.

Of course, the idea of simple communication being possible is interesting. If we think that modern day media is that neutral then we are beyond naive. If this where our only problem then I think we would have things licked...all we would need to do is a bit of basic education. However, although I can quite easily explain climate change, its impacts, our responsibility and our possible responses; I can rarely persuade people that there participation is required and that this is not merely a personal interest.

If we where being honest, it is apparent that my problem is that i cannot sell conceptual products. I need to be better not at communicating but at marketing climate change. We would also admit that the news media are superb at selling ideas to there chosen demographic and that what they need to do is accept this. Climate change must be discussed as  an urgen human problem with very real and feasible human fixes the media must be prepared to constructively engage in spreading this message.

There is a speech transcript from a UNFCCC side event at Nairobi here. There is also a detailed breakdown of the speches on the CISERO website.

Speeches are by:

Dr Rajendra K Pachauri assumed his current responsibilities as the head of TERI (Tata Energy Research Institute) in 1981. In April 2002, Dr Pachauri was elected Chairman of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), which was established by the World Meteorological Organization and United Nations Environment Programme in 1988.

Pål Prestrud is the current director of CICERO (Center for International Climate and Environmental Research – Oslo) and vice chair of ACIA (Arctic Climate Impact Assessment). He holds a doctorate in biology from the University of Oslo, and his previous positions include division director for the Division of Science and Technology at the Research Council of Norway, research director at the Norwegian Polar Institute, and deputy director general at the Section for Polar Affairs and Cooperation with Russia, Department for International Cooperation at the Ministry of the Environment.

Nick Nuttall is spokesperson for United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

Jules Boykoff holds a Ph.D. in political science. His work on U.S. media coverage of global warming, which he co-authored with Maxwell Boykoff (Oxford University, Environmental Change Institute), has appeared in a variety of scholarly and popular publications. Al Gore used their research in his film and book “An Inconvenient Truth”. Boykoff teaches political science at Pacific University in the United States.

Liisa Antilla holds a master’s degree in human geography from King’s College London. She is an independent researcher living in Seattle, Washington, USA. Some of her work on media coverage of climate change is posted at

Alister Doyle has been Reuters Environment Correspondent since 2004. Based in Oslo, he has worked in more than 30 countries with Reuters since 1982, with postings in Paris, Brussels, London, Central and South America.

Marc Morano joined the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee as the majority Communications Director in June 2006 after a decade and a half as a working journalist, documentary maker and national television correspondent.

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