Cogito, ergo sum. Or Je pense, donc je suis.
Enough of the Latin and French. Let’s stick to English.
I think, therefore I am. We can thank Rene Descartes for giving us that critical element of Western philosophy.
But for our purposes in The Yale Forum, let’s paraphrase it to read: “I report, therefore I blog.”
A respected social scientist, Baruch Fischhoff of Carnegie Mellon University, sees his discipline having to play an increasingly critical role in the climate change arena if citizens are to become fully engaged and involved in the issue.
Facing continued political stalemate in Washington, D.C., over federal climate change regulations, at least 800 mayors of cities large and small over the past three years have signed pledges to drastically reduce their carbon emissions.
We have decades and decades invested in doing things based on old rules. Now, the rules have changed, and newsrooms need to change as well. We need new attitudes and new cultures. This will only happen if individual journalists put forward the effort to change their minds about what their jobs are and how they do them.
The story of climate change is a story of water – how much of it falls from the sky and where, whether it falls as rain or snow, and how fast it melts and evaporates once it’s on the ground.
Veteran participants in the annual conferences of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, AAAS, will tell you it’s just another word for that meeting.
Intrepid reporters, and hungry ones, can eat their way through the annual four-day programs and barely tap their shrinking per diems and disappearing travel expense budgets.
Common Climate Misconceptions
Among the most iconic image of Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” was that of coastlines and cities disappearing beneath rising seas.
Sea level rise is certainly one of the more worrisome impacts of climate change, but the film’s disregard of the time scales involved in sea level rise may have led some to think that sea level rise on the order of 20 feet is probable in this century. Scientists cannot completely rule out such rapid sea level rise, but the general sense in the climate science community is that a lower but still worrying degree of sea level rise is more likely.