My Proposition

Climate Change is as much an issue of environmental science as societal psychological. Before we can begin to combat climate change, we must first alter our relationship with nature. A primary factor which makes climate change such a difficult topic to mentally tackle is psychological distance. Comprised of four sub-categories, psychological distance encircles temporal, physical, and societal distance, as well as uncertainty. Once we address this psychological distance can we start to address the climate change threatening the planet

For thousands of years, indigenous cultures lived in harmony with nature. By analyzing their lifestyles, we can glean valuable information, and apply this knowledge to shift western culture towards a more mutualistic and symbiotic relationship with the environment.

As many movements and leaders have recognized before, to influence a societal mindset one must begin with the early education. By incorporating progressive methods aimed to close the gap in regard to psychological distance, one can directly influence the next generation and effectively foster a societal mindset prepared to deal with the changing climate.

Food For Thought

The 7 Psychological Reasons That Are Stopping Us From Acting On Climate Change

  • This article argues that human nature inhibits action against climate change. We are simply not programmed to mentally cope with such a drastic problem.

How Psychology Can Save The World From Climate Change

  • “In sum, climate change is often presented as an abstract, uncertain cost, distant in space and time, and requiring external incentives to motivate individual action. Psychological research suggests this is an especially dangerous combination, sure to make people underestimate the risk and unlikely to compel them to action.”
  • This article argues that we need to draw from the social sciences in dealing with global warming.

Psychology & Global Climate Change

  • This lengthy booklet by the APA outlines human’s behavioral contribution to climate change.

The Psychology of Climate Change Communication

  • This guide highlights how we have all the technology necessary to solve climate change, the only thing standing in our way is our mindset.

Why I’m Here

Climate Change has toes dipped in many pools. Before we can confront the issue at hand, we need to look at its underlying causes, particularly our relationship with the environment. The human psychological attitude in regard to climate change has laid the foundation for disaster,and we need to reconfigure our collective mindset.

Society’s Achilles’ Heel

We think too highly of ourselves. And if we continue on this track, our collective ego will be our downfall.

Mankind has a tendency to focus on itself, stemming back to ancient times. Take the Copernican revolution: previously, we believed that the entire universe revolved around the Earth. Now we’re aware that the our planet is just one of millions in our galaxy.

Though we may have moved beyond this theory, we haven’t abandoned the mindset which stubbornly perceived it as truth. This same mindset of superiority is still present in society today and is still whispering lies in our ears.

Over a century ago, Darwin presented his theory of evolution. Though this theory clearly states that species are constantly developing, mankind seems to think that we are exempt from this process. Other species may have evolved into man, but man is done evolving: we are the pinnacle of evolution.

With our vision clouded by this misconception, we have made a very dangerous assumption and taken even more dangerous action. As the pinnacle of evolution, we have inherited the Earth, and therefore it is our property: we can do what we want with it. We can exploit the Earth and neglect the other species which call it home, all in the name of human progress.

Our superiority complex has blinded us to the faults in our actions, but thankfully there is a simple remedy. We need to widen our scope and understand that everything doesn’t revolve around us. Man is just another inhabitant of this planet. We are still evolving; we are not the culmination of all life. Before we can overcome complex issues such as climate change, we must overcome our ego. Humility is the key.