Society/Culture Should we continue to lie to people about the risks of climate change?

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Seeds

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Sep 15, 2007
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I don't know
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Thirty years ago modern society was on a path headed to destruction. Global man made emissions were doubling every 40 years setting the world on the path of 4-8 degree C of global average temperature change by 2100. The consequences would be catastrophic for human society.

humanity remained on this path for the next 20 years despite rising global awareness of the extent of the problem being created through the 1992 rio earth summit and genuine emission reduction commitments by many developed economies being made in 1997 as part of the kyoto protocol.

over this period we taught school kids of our impending climate doom. And this was the right course to take. if governments run by old people who would mostly be dead in 30 years didnt really care suffciently to do something about it then the kids who were going to experience the disaster needed to be told. And this has created significant fear in young people and encouraged them to protest in large numbers and put pressure on the old leaders to act. While the government action hasnt been anywhere as significant as hoped for it has had some major positive consequences that have helped change the likely outcome dramatically.

while governements didnt employ large carbon taxes or regulate away emission intensive industries, they did provide significant financial support to r&d in clean technologies. The more climate aware private sector has also contributed significant r&d funding as well. And as a result in the past decade we have seen dramatic declines in the costs of renewable energy, batteries and electric vehicles. These technologies, which were largely fantasy 15 years ago, are now as cheap or nearly as cheap as their emission intensive counterparts and they are on track to become vastly cheaper in the next 10-15 years. Coal power is now dead in all realistic scenarios. Petrol cars are also on the way out.

I.e. regardless of how little governments now do to combat climate change the uptake of these clean techs will happen anyway and in considerable numbers and this has removed the worst case outcomes that we all feared not long ago. No longer does any serious climate mitigation modeller still consider scenarios with emissions continuing to rise at a strong rate over many decades. The worst case scenarios now have global emissions stabilising over the next decade or so and then remain flag. I.e. We no longer believe scenarios of temp rising 4-8 degrees by 2100 will happen. The worst cases scenarios now only have 2.5-3.5 degrees of warming max. Now while these are far from desirable scenarios they arent the human society collapsing scenarios of the past. In fact the literature estimates of the economic impact of climate damages in these scenarios is only around 3 percent of world gdp by 2050. to show how small this is, the world gdp will probably rise by 100 percent between now and 2050. In other words, no one will notice tge 3 percent impact at 2050 as peoples standard of livings should continue to rise sharply. And yes we are aware that economic losses is not the only cost of climate damage.

now im not advocating we should simply do nothing to stop climate change And let technology do its work ala scott morrison. I very much believe we should aim to constrain temp changes to 1.5 degrees, through large carbon prices because the economic cost of doing so really isnt all the much either and there are still significant benefits of doing so even if its no longer about saving modern society. And this desire has created my conundrum.

should we tell people, particularly young people, the truth about what has changed? The world is no longer on a path to impending climate doom. young people have not been told this message. They still believe the risk of climate change is not all that different to a extinction level asteroid hitting the earth.

The costs of not telling people the truth and letting them believe the world is doomed from climate change:
- extreme mental health problems created from anxiety and a loss of meaning.
- failure to get youth protest movements behind other now more serious problems like the rise of authoritarianism.

costs of telling them the truth:
-if young people realise that climate doom is now highly unlikely will they continue to protest in large numbers and push governments to do more with the aim of constraining emissions and temp changes to 1.5 degrees? I highly doubt they would. Most people would stop paying attention and only a small minority with virtually no influence would continue the fight. and without it governments run by old people would do nothing and the 3 degree temp change would happen.

thus i believe we are stuck with a set of bad outcomes. Do we now abuse young peoples fears and mental health by continuing to push the lie (the IPCC has decided this is the path to pursue by continuing to publish emission scenarios from 15 years ago that no expert now believes is credible) or do we tell them the truth knowing that it will kill the climate youth protest movement and make 3 degree temp worlds inevitable?

im stuck. I believe in telling the truth and not abusing people through denying them knowledge. Plus the world really needs to do more to stop authoritarianism and the youth of the world can help with this. But still. It will result in bad climate outcomes.

What should we do?
 
Last edited:

wmvaux

All Australian
Jul 29, 2008
900
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Collingwood
The lie is that Climate Change is an issue. All it ever was is a way to send money to the deep state (Vatican), it's all been exposed in the last few years. All Governments around the world have been complicit as they are all part of the deep state and will be brought down very soon.
 

lusheslewis

All Australian
Oct 8, 2010
679
406
BEast Fremantle
AFL Club
West Coast
The latest information is freely available, I don't believe the IPCC reports are dishonest. Whilst there are "alarmist" parents and teachers out there, I'm not sure what can be done about it, it's a complicated topic.

IMO aiming for under 1.5 degrees is also dishonest, that's barely more than half a degree from today and isn't going to happen.
 

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Herzog

Team Captain
Nov 19, 2021
305
356
AFL Club
Collingwood
The lie is that Climate Change is an issue. All it ever was is a way to send money to the deep state (Vatican), it's all been exposed in the last few years. All Governments around the world have been complicit as they are all part of the deep state and will be brought down very soon.
Who exposed it? I never saw that.
Thirty years ago modern society was on a path headed to destruction. Global man made emissions were doubling every 40 years setting the world on the path of 4-8 degree C of global average temperature change by 2100. The consequences would be catastrophic for human society.

humanity remained on this path for the next 20 years despite rising global awareness of the extent of the problem being created through the 1992 rio earth summit and genuine emission reduction commitments by many developed economies being made in 1997 as part of the kyoto protocol.

over this period we taught school kids of our impending climate doom. And this was the right course to take. if governments run by old people who would mostly be dead in 30 years didnt really care suffciently to do something about it then the kids who were going to experience the disaster needed to be told. And this has created significant fear in young people and encouraged them to protest in large numbers and put pressure on the old leaders to act. While the government action hasnt been anywhere as significant as hoped for it has had some major positive consequences that have helped change the likely outcome dramatically.

while governements didnt employ large carbon taxes or regulate away emission intensive industries, they did provide significant financial support to r&d in clean technologies. The more climate aware private sector has also contributed significant r&d funding as well. And as a result in the past decade we have seen dramatic declines in the costs of renewable energy, batteries and electric vehicles. These technologies, which were largely fantasy 15 years ago, are now as cheap or nearly as cheap as their emission intensive counterparts and they are on track to become vastly cheaper in the next 10-15 years. Coal power is now dead in all realistic scenarios. Petrol cars are also on the way out.

I.e. regardless of how little governments now do to combat climate change the uptake of these clean techs will happen anyway and in considerable numbers and this has removed the worst case outcomes that we all feared not long ago. No longer does any serious climate mitigation modeller still consider scenarios with emissions continuing to rise at a strong rate over many decades. The worst case scenarios now have global emissions stabilising over the next decade or so and then remain flag. I.e. We no longer believe scenarios of temp rising 4-8 degrees by 2100 will happen. The worst cases scenarios now only have 2.5-3.5 degrees of warming max. Now while these are far from desirable scenarios they arent the human society collapsing scenarios of the past. In fact the literature estimates of the economic impact of climate damages in these scenarios is only around 3 percent of world gdp by 2050. to show how small this is, the world gdp will probably rise by 100 percent between now and 2050. In other words, no one will notice tge 3 percent impact at 2050 as peoples standard of livings should continue to rise sharply. And yes we are aware that economic losses is not the only cost of climate damage.

now im not advocating we should simply do nothing to stop climate change And let technology do its work ala scott morrison. I very much believe we should aim to constrain temp changes to 1.5 degrees, through large carbon prices because the economic cost of doing so really isnt all the much either and there are still significant benefits of doing so even if its no longer about saving modern society. And this desire has created my conundrum.

should we tell people, particularly young people, the truth about what has changed? The world is no longer on a path to impending climate doom. young people have not been told this message. They still believe the risk of climate change is not all that different to a extinction level asteroid hitting the earth.

The costs of not telling people the truth and letting them believe the world is doomed from climate change:
- extreme mental health problems created from anxiety and a loss of meaning.
- failure to get youth protest movements behind other now more serious problems like the rise of authoritarianism.

costs of telling them the truth:
-if young people realise that climate doom is now highly unlikely will they continue to protest in large numbers and push governments to do more with the aim of constraining emissions and temp changes to 1.5 degrees? I highly doubt they would. Most people would stop paying attention and only a small minority with virtually no influence would continue the fight. and without it governments run by old people would do nothing and the 3 degree temp change would happen.

thus i believe we are stuck with a set of bad outcomes. Do we now abuse young peoples fears and mental health by continuing to push the lie (the IPCC has decided this is the path to pursue by continuing to publish emission scenarios from 15 years ago that no expert now believes is credible) or do we tell them the truth knowing that it will kill the climate youth protest movement and make 3 degree temp worlds inevitable?

im stuck. I believe in telling the truth and not abusing people through denying them knowledge. Plus the world really needs to do more to stop authoritarianism and the youth of the world can help with this. But still. It will result in bad climate outcomes.

What should we do?

My kids have grown up in the shadow of climate change and they're fine. I think kids are more resilient than you think. Push on with what the science says is required.
 
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