With Hurricane Sandy and the re-election of Barack Obama, perhaps it’s a good time to discuss climate change.
For scientists, policy-makers and organizers who frequently discuss climate change, the last few years have been rough! While they still may be discussing it amongst themselves, with the economic downturn, a larger audience has been absent. An episode of Frontline explores the massive shift in public opinion on climate change.
But the last two weeks might change all of that.
Hurricane Sandy affected so many people that climate change popped up in many new conversations. Click on these questions to find some of these headlines:
- Was the storm caused by climate change?
- Are humans to blame?
- Will global warming bring more “frankenstorms” like Sandy?
- How can cities protect themselves?
- What are some of the financial impacts?
- How can communities adapt to a new normal of storms like these?
- How do we find stormproof solutions?
Will Obama’s second term allow him to speak more freely (and more urgently) about climate change? Scientific American says that we’ll likely only see “more of the same.” But New Scientist has some suggestions about how he can create a “climate change legacy.” And Brandon Keim, in Wired, sees opportunity for the President:
A cap-and-trade system for carbon pollution is unlikely, but other approaches are possible, from adapting infrastructure and improving post-disaster resilience to revenue-neutral carbon taxes and reduced fossil fuel subsidies.
Let’s hope these conversations start quickly (the Academy’s Peter Roopnarine blogs about climate change, providing many conversation starters). According to recent news headlines (here and here), we’re quickly looking at worst-case scenarios for global warming.
What do you want to say about climate change? Share below.