• July 13, 2010

By Cara Pike, June 11th, 2010

I was recently asked to lead a discussion with the Connect US Network around framing the climate debate in light of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, ClimateGate and the Gulf Oil Spill. What are the best themes, frames and messages that can help promote climate policies and programs during such uncertain political times?

I’ve been tracking environmental attitudes and public opinion on global warming since starting the Social Capital Project in 2005. I’m interested in the long term strategic communications challenges and opportunities that are often overlooked when current events are all-consuming and one poll after another is being reported on in the media without reference to how...

• July 13, 2010

Anthony Leiserowitz, Ph.D., Director, Yale Project on Climate Change Communication, released another paper that examines the impact of Climategate on public perceptions of climate change and climate scientists.

Here are the major findings:


  • Climategate had a significant negative effect on public beliefs in global warming and trust in scientists
  • The loss of trust in scientists, however, appears to have been primarily among people with a strongly individualistic worldview or politically conservative ideology

Fortunately, they found that Americans, overall, continued to...

Tony Leiserowitz • February 21, 2010

Dear Friends,

Today we are releasing our latest report: Americans’ Actions to Conserve Energy, Reduce Waste, and Limit Global Warming. In brief, we found that there is a significant gap between Americans’ conservation attitudes and their actual behaviors. For example:

•88 percent of Americans say it is important to recycle at home, but only 51 percent “often” or “always” do;
•81 percent say it is important to use re-usable shopping bags, but only 33 percent “often” or “always” do;
•76 percent say it is important to buy locally grown food, but only 26 percent “often” or “always” do;
•76 percent say it is important to walk or bike instead of driving, but...

Tony Leiserowitz • February 4, 2010

Dear Friends,
Today we are releasing the second wave of results from our recent national survey. This report finds that, despite the recent drops in public beliefs and concern about global warming, a large majority of Americans—regardless of political affiliation—support the passage of federal climate and energy policies. These include support for:

  • Funding more research on renewable energy, such as solar and wind power (85 percent)
  • Tax rebates for people buying fuel-efficient vehicles or solar panels (82 percent)
  • Establishing programs to teach Americans how to save energy (72 percent)
  • Regulating carbon dioxide as a pollutant (71 percent)
  • School curricula to teach children about the causes, consequences, and...
Tony Leiserowitz • January 28, 2010

Dear Friends,

Today we are releasing the results of a new national survey on public responses to climate change. This report focuses on public beliefs and attitudes and finds that public concern about global warming has dropped sharply since the fall of 2008:

  • The percentage of Americans who think global warming is happening has declined 14 points, to 57 percent.
  • The percentage of Americans who think global warming is caused mostly by human activities has dropped 10 points, to 47 percent.
  • Only 50 percent of Americans now say they are “somewhat” or “very worried” about global warming, a 13-point decrease.

In line with these shifting beliefs, there has been an increase in the number of Americans who...

Tony Leiserowitz • January 21, 2010

Dear Friends,
Happy New Year!  Thank you for your interest in the work of the Office of Strategic Initiatives and the Project on Climate Change here at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.   
A few recent highlights to ring in the new year :
The Yale Project on Climate Change has made great strides, including cutting-edge research on the public's understanding and responses to climate change, the convening of two workshops on climate science for broadcast meteorologists, publication of the online Yale Forum for Climate Change & the Media, and a major initiative with science museums across the country to help Americans understand the local causes, consequences, and solutions to...

Jim Hoggan • November 23, 2009

You may not like what these guys have to say but at least they are exploring THE toughest climate change question "why after decades of public education and the growth of scientific certainty aren't we doing something to fix climate change?"

Last month, the Pew Research Center released its latest poll of public attitudes on global warming. On its face, the news was not good: Belief that global warming is occurring had declined from 71 percent in April of 2008 to 56 percent in October — an astonishing drop in just 18 months. The belief that global warming is human-caused declined from 47 percent to 36 percent.


Jim Hoggan • November 16, 2009

Two Stonehouse members have recently contributed to new, evidence-based guides for communicating about global warming – two documents that have the capacity to make major advances in the integrity and efficacy of the conversation about climate change.

The first of these documents comes from the Center for Research on Environmental Decisions (CRED) at Columbia University in New York. Entitled The Psychology of Climate Change Communicationsit is framed as “a guide for scientists, journalists, educators, political aides and the interested public.” Stonehouse scholar Anthony Leiserowitz, Director of the Yale Project on Climate Change, was a...

John Lefebvre • September 1, 2009

I'd love you guys to read this piece. It's about the humanities and fidelity in thinking. Dehumanized: When math and science rule the school By Mark Slouka Many years ago, my fiancée attempted to lend me a bit of respectability by introducing me to my would-be mother-in-law as a future Ph.D. in literature. From Columbia, I added, polishing the apple of my prospects. She wasn’t buying it. “A doctor of philosophy,” she said. “What’re you going to do, open a philosophy store?”

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