Most people get climate change – are you one of them?

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Most people get climate change – are you one of them?

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Jim Densham, Senior Land Use Policy Officer with RSPB Scotland, is back with another blog on the For The Love Of...campaign that we are part of.

Most people get climate change – are you one of them?

It's time to start thinking that the vast majority of people do get climate change after all – they understand it. 

Most people don’t even need convincing that it will have huge impacts if we don’t act now. Perhaps our collective inaction on sorting out the climate is down to us not knowing what to do about it rather than not believing it is a threat.

I spent Valentines Day and the weekend before last asking visitors to RSPB Scotland events what they love, as part of the For The Love Of...climate campaign. The simple message is that everything we love and hold dear could be affected if we don’t act to halt climate change now. 

At our event at the Kelvingrove Museum in Glasgow we focussed on the link between extinctions and climate change. Climate change is a risk to our wildlife because it heaps further pressure on already vulnerable species. Scientists have estimated that with every 1oC rise in global average temperatures we will lose 10% of species to extinction. 

Seeing as we already have experienced an 0.85oC  rise since the industrial revolution and we are well on the way to at least a 2oC rise we can expect a much less biodiverse world to the one our parents and grandparents knew.

Lots of children drew their favourite animal on a heart and parents helped them complete a postcard calling for the First Minister to take action. It was really brilliant because no-one refused to support the campaign but what really surprised me was that so many people who we talked to totally understood the message. It struck me that people understand the impacts of climate change more than we realise.

Perhaps most people don’t know what can be done about climate change and as a result stay quiet. After all, climate change is not an easy message to sell because; it's a global issue with no specific location, there is no single baddie or monster at fault, the people most affected are far away (definitely not in Scotland yet), it can be highly technical, and it's depressing. And because people aren't rattling the gates of Parliament about climate change, politicians and world leaders haven’t yet got the message that we need to act. But they will. 

This year because the For The Love Of campaign is giving a voice to everyone to tell Governments that we do care and there are lots of us. Add your voice in Scotland by asking Nicola Sturgeon to act on climate change now through our partner’s website

  • This BBC programme was really good and looked at the important numbers associated with climate change, including the human attribution

    Worth a watch. Also see the graph on this page

    It shows that the calculations predicting natural causes and human causes better matches the actual observed climate changes than just the calculations predicting natural causes.

    I wish I was wrong, I truly do, but the science is very strong and clear.

  • Climate change has always been happening and scientists aren't always right. I believe it to be absolutely natural causes. I've never been so sure that it's not man made and that most likely, although I can't prove it, is that it's something like a tilt of the earths North and South Poles which can change the climates. And there's always been changes over the different century's and it's always affected wildlife in one way or another.

    Regards, Ian.

  • Hi Thomo. It's Jim Densham here. I wrote the article.

    I don't like to use the word 'believe' in terms of climate change as the science is clear and 95% of climate scientists agree that humans have caused it (actually the same percentage who agree that smoking causes cancer!). But do you 'believe' in climate change - it sounds like you do. Man made or not climate change is affected our much loved and special wildlife, and it needs our help. We can all agree that we need to help those species which are struggling to adapt by providing more homes for nature. That's we are aiming to do at the RSPB.

    The climate sceptic voice has been strong and has a powerful message against action and against challenging society's freedoms. The fact is that the majority of people do accept that humans are responsible - as I explain in the blog post above. If we act now we can reduce our GHG emissions through positive changes for society - it doesn't have to be about negative taxes.    

  • I've never actually believed in man made climate change. There have been weather changes and also milder winters. But there's always been changes to the weather over the century's, just as fast as it's happening now. I believe it's just natural causes, possibly by a change in the tilt of the planet Earth from time to time over the century's. Don't forget we've also has mini ice ages over the last 400-500 years. I think all these politicians and others are just clambering on about man made climate change, to try and get more tax out of all of us.