Editor’s note: When Buzz, Hoot, and Roar are out and about, we often get asked how to tell “nonbelievers” about climate change. That’s not an easy question. Climate change is a complicated issue with many answers. When we read news of unprecedented amounts of bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef or extreme polar ice melting, climate change can seem abstract and distant. Buzz, Hoot, and Roar have each attempted to explain the causes and impacts of climate change to friends, parents who’re enjoying our pleasant-weather winter, grandparents, random people on the bus, dogs, etc., sometimes with little success, and many times with all of us ending up confused and bewildered. So here we have a mission.
We asked Aranzazu Lascurain, who explains climate change for a living, to give us some simple talking points. Over the next several months, we’re going to provide you with examples of how the world around us is affected by climate change right now. We hope you can use these specific examples to help paint a broader picture for people who might be interested in how climate change affects them. We’ve enlisted some of our favorite artists to help us impart fascinating work by top-notch researchers. The story we’re sharing is sometimes frightening but not entirely hopeless. Here, Aranzazu shares with us Susan Hassol of Climate Communication’s five top talking points when talking about climate change.
Check our facts!
It’s real: 1 http://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2016/0420/Nice-weather-eases-Americans-climate-change-worries http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus/
Scientists agree: 2 http://www.pnas.org/content/107/27/12107.short
It’s us: 3 http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v453/n7193/abs/nature06937.html 4 https://www3.epa.gov/climatechange/science/causes.html
It’s bad: 5 seasons are shifting 6 sea levels are rising 7 heat waves are intensifying 8 some places are flooding more than ever 9 some places are dry as bones
There’s hope: 10 Animals and plants are, to some degree, adaptable 11 http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_energy/smart-energy-solutions/increase-renewables/clean-energy-green-jobs.html#.V07zRteY4yM https://nextgenamerica.org/news-reports/our-clean-energy-future/ http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/articles/2015/01/fact-sheet-renewable-energy-job-numbers.html
Text by Roar and Aranzazu Lascurain. Aranzazu is the program coordinator for the Southeast Climate Science Center, located at NC State University, where she tracks and communicates on science results stemming from the center’s research funding program– these are typically applied research projects looking deeply into global change impacts to ecological systems. She also oversees the Global Change Fellows program, serves as the liaison for Tribes and indigenous peoples, and leads other communication and outreach efforts that bring diver se sets of people together to explore the complex sides of climate change. Follow the climate change center on Twitter at @se_csc
Art by Katie McKissick. AKA Beatrice the Biologist, McKissick is a blog and science comic that hopes to make science fun and interesting for the casual reader. Visit www.beatricebiologist.com to see more of her work, and follower her on Facebook and Twitter.
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