Global Warming en Campaign Art: Using the hot road to cook a meal <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><strong>People, Spaces, Deliberation bloggers present exceptional campaign art from all over the world. These examples are meant to inspire.</strong><br /><br /> As per <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">NASA’s definition</a>, global warming is “the unusually rapid increase in Earth’s average surface temperature over the past century primarily due to the greenhouse gases released as people burn fossil fuels.” This increase in temperature has <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">grown exponentially</a> in recent times. According to a <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">World Bank report</a>, warming of close to 1.5°C above pre-industrial times is already locked into Earth’s atmospheric system by past and predicted greenhouse gas emissions.<br /><br /> This rise in temperatures is most notable in cities due to the so-called “<a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">urban heat island</a>” effect. This is caused by the concentration of people, vehicles, buildings and machinery, all of which generate heat. However, the biggest contributor to the urban heat island effect is the replacement of plants by concrete, according to the Smithsonian’s article.<br /><br /> Deforestation and increased pollution have caused Paraguay’s capital Asunción to be recognized as the hottest city in the world. World Wildlife Fund had an interesting idea to raise awareness amongst Paraguayans about the dangerous effects of global warming. With a local chef, they organized an outdoor restaurant with a “Global Warming menu” cooked directly on the hot asphalt of the street.<br />  <div class="asset-wrapper asset aid-249 asset-video"> <strong > WWF Global Warming Menu </strong> <div class="content"> <div class="field field-name-field-asset-video-file field-type-emvideo field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><object type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" data="//"> <param name="movie" value="//" /> <param name="wmode" value="transparent" /> <param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /> </object> </div></div></div></div> </div></div></div></div> Wed, 16 Mar 2016 18:34:00 +0000 Davinia Levy 7340 at Shades of grey in the global green movement <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p> <em><img alt="Portrait of elderly man in Bhutan" height="186" src="" style="float:left" title="" width="280" />"Each new generation is reared by its predecessor; the latter must therefore improve in order to improve its successor. The movement is circular." </em>- Emile Durkheim<br />  <br /> How are <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Ban Ki-moon</a>, Secretary-General of the United Nations, <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Jim Yong Kim</a>, President of the World Bank Group, <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Christiana Figueres</a>, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Bill Mckibben</a>, <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Pope Francis</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Al Gore</a> alike? The answer is very simple: they are part of a 60+ cohort, which includes baby boomers and their predecessors. And they are all very effective and passionate about how to tackle the biggest threat of our times: climate change.<br />  <br /> I vividly remember that the first person who drew my attention as a child to the environment was my grandfather who was a small farmer in my native Poland. Around twenty-five years ago, during my first visit to Siberia, tribal seniors raised the issue of the melting of the “eternal ice” as well. Neither my grandfather nor the seniors were highly educated, but they were able to observe the rapid changes in their own environment. Despite this, we did not heed their concerns as they did not possess academic credentials. Now that over five thousand researchers have agreed that climate change is occurring, we are suddenly starting to pay attention.<br />  <br /> Older adults constantly address the issues involved in global warming to Millennials, youth or even children, fully aware that their generation’s irresponsible behavior contributed immensely to the current state of the Earth. But why exclude the culprits? What happened to resocialization and second chances? Even James Madison was aware of generational responsibilities when he stated: “<em>Each generation should be made to bear the burden of its own wars, instead of carrying them on, at the expense of other generations.”</em><br />  <br /> The baby boomers and the silent generation are reaping the benefits of the “longevity dividend”. Why don’t we start working together towards the survival of our kind not only as preachers, but also in the trenches of the global climate change movement?  Members of the grey generations are often bold, skilled, experienced, financially independent, and in most cases, are very active and sensitive to social inequity. As the old saying goes: <em>the funeral shroud has no pockets.</em> It is in their best interest to be part of this movement.</p> </div></div></div> Mon, 22 Jun 2015 15:22:00 +0000 Leszek J. Sibilski 7084 at The things we do: Why do conspiracy theories thrive? <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><h4> <img alt="Girl receiving oral polio vaccine in India" height="187" src="" style="float:left" title="" width="280" />Individuals who believe in conspiracy theories are often disregarded as 'paranoid' and 'irrational', but social science research indicates that they engage in psychological processes that we all do. The difference lies their unusual distrust of authority.</h4> <p> Conspiracy theories abound!  Rumors are whispered, discrepancies in a story are seized upon, and the official version of events is discredited.  Then, an alternate explanation is proposed and evidence is gathered to support it.<br /><br /> While there is no formal, generally-accepted understanding of a ‘conspiracy theory’, they are usually considered to be an explanation for an event that is not the most plausible account and which postulates unusually sinister and competent conspirators carrying out the conspiracy.  Conspiracy theories are usually based on weak evidence, are self-insulating from fact, and sensationalize the actors or the implications of the event.<br /><br /> Contrary to what we might think, many of the people who follow conspiracies aren’t crazy.  They are actually skeptics, they just happen to be selective with their doubt.   According to research, individuals that believe in conspiracy theories tend to favor a worldview in which people are prone to misbehave (or behave downright evil) and in which elites exercise omnipotence.</p> </div></div></div> Tue, 02 Jun 2015 18:34:00 +0000 Roxanne Bauer 7066 at Framing Climate Change <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><P><IMG height=236 alt="" hspace=0 src="" width=280 align=left border=0>It’s environment week, kind of. Tuesday was <A href="" target=_blank>World Environment Day </A>and tomorrow is <A href="" target=_blank>World Oceans Day</A>. Both days were institutionalized through United Nations resolutions to draw attention to the environment and the threats it is exposed to. For communicators in development, climate change is one of the most relevant issues. Communication scholars also have thought a lot about how to effectively <A href="" target=_blank>communicate climate change</A>. I am not quite sure, however, whether the two sides are working together. Let me therefore discuss how <A href="" target=_blank>framing</A> can influence our understanding and acceptance of climate change.</P> <P><A href="" target=_blank>Matthew Nisbet</A> from American University has written an interesting article on “<A href="" target=_blank>Communicating Climate Change: Why Frames Matter for Public Engagement</A>”. He argues that the enormous divide between the factual reality of climate change and citizens’ perception is partly due to the way interest groups have been framing the issue. He identifies a number of frames that are being used in the public discussion (p. 18):</div></div></div> Thu, 07 Jun 2012 17:44:07 +0000 Anne-Katrin Arnold 6009 at Closing the Gap Between Climate Change Science and Public Opinion <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><P><IMG height=262 alt="" hspace=0 src="" width=280 align=left border=0>The global policy community seems unlikely to take drastic steps with regard to climate change any time soon. Politicians remain hesitant about taking action, although scientific consensus on climate change is overwhelming. It’s happening, it’s happening now, and it will cause massive damage. And it’s mostly caused by humans. Public opinion, on the other hand, is far behind the science. Are politicians unwilling to impose dramatic measures to slow down climate change because the public is unwilling to pay the cost – yet? Are they kicking the can down the road because the people are not yet willing to fully embrace the fact and the consequences of climate change?</div></div></div> Wed, 14 Dec 2011 19:57:19 +0000 Anne-Katrin Arnold 5871 at Governance for a Crowded Planet: The Need to Leap and to Innovate – Part I <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p><img class="" height="210" alt="" hspace="0" width="280" align="left" border="0" src="/files/publicsphere/image/2415084235_e36a61ccea.jpeg" />In March, Jeffrey Sachs published his latest book <em><a target="_blank" href="">Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet</a></em> &ndash; an urgent plea for societies across the globe to reduce and better manage their impact on the earth&rsquo;s ecosystems if we want to survive and prosper in an ever more crowded world.</p> <p>As Sachs warns, continuing &lsquo;business as usual&rsquo; will make life on our planet increasingly unsustainable. Air pollution and global warming present the biggest risks. But as humans have come to use almost any natural resource intensively, there are also major risks related to the availability of water and of fertile top-soil. At the same time, Sachs argues that we have the technical tools and the economic means to save the planet and to accommodate a rising global population &ndash; as well as increasing global wealth and rising consumption in today&rsquo;s poorer countries.</p> <p></div></div></div> Wed, 08 Oct 2008 17:59:38 +0000 Verena Fritz 5092 at