1. Lifestyle

Lesson 1: Communicate Urgency

  • The brain has a tendency to react strongly to risks that seem novel, uncertain, uncontrollable, and life-threatening --i.e. COVID-19, immediacy
  • Even though it already kills people, Climate Change is predominantly seen as a risk to be faced in the future
  • Shaping awareness around climate change requires reframing its message

Lesson 2: Elevate the Voices of Trusted Messengers

We are learning valuable lessons from this Public Health Crisis

  • Gallup poll rates nurses as the most trusted profession 18 years in a row
  • Can the healthcare community can be more vocal on climate change? Think George Mason Program on Climate Change and Health, Hospital Coalitions, etc.
  • Pew demonstrated that six-in-ten Americans say scientists should play an active role in policy debates about scientific issues
  • Are you tired of hearing 97% of scientists agree on human-caused CC? Clearly that message isn't working.
  • Maybe it is time to hear more from scientists directly, rather than politicians, professors and children.

Lesson 3: Localized Scale Works Best

  • Simple attainable solutions that can be done from home are essential (i.e. telecommuting, leveraging video conferencing solutions, like Zoom, to facilitate remote work)
  • Decentralized response? Perhaps not the most effective, if we had responded sooner to COVID...
  • We are hearing from local leaders... In Atlanta, governor and mayor coordinated efforts...encouraged use of hand san and avoidance of public events
  • Global Covenant of Mayors, ICLEI, National Council of Local Governments, etc. building capacity at these hyper-local levels for climate action

More to know

  • Shift Perspective, Short-Term vs. Long-Term
    • Sacrificing convenience of globalized economy, at least temporarily
    • Amazon reducing stock, harder to access consumer goods, like toilet paper
  • Recognition of Vulnerable populations
    • Like climate change, people who are hit hardest are already vulnerable
      • Low-income, elderly, sick
    • People are banding together to help them

Be intentional, coronavirus feels personal

  1. On NPR, Dan Gilbert, Harvard psychologist, argued that climate change lacks four fundamental features that typically trigger an immediate response: Intentional, Immoral, Imminent, Instantaneous
  2. Show immediacy w/out compromising integrity
  3. “With some people, climate change is actually more of an imminent threat. I mean, I'm thinking about farmers who are seeing more ruined crops. I'm thinking about people who live in certain regions that are definitely getting more extreme weather.”

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