Climate change and energy security
Climate change and energy security: Assessing the impact of information and its delivery on attitudes and behaviour / Antony Froggatt, Catherine Happer and Greg Philo. UKERC Report, December 2012, 24 p.
Summary points (© Chatham House) :
- Between 2011-12 The Glasgow University Media Group (GUMG) and Chatham House undertook a qualitative study of audience beliefs and behaviours in relation to climate change and energy security, employing focus groups and interviews. The aim was to examine the specific triggers for changes in patterns of understanding and attitude – and the conditions under which these lead to changes in behaviour.
- The findings indicate there is public confusion over climate change, which reflect the range and diversification of sources and views feeding audiences on this topic.
- Energy security, suffers from low understanding and awareness, reflecting the lack of focused coverage in the media, which concentrates on aspects of different supplies rather than longer term availability or affordability.
- There is an urgent need for a more effective approach to the communication of public statements about climate change and energy security, contextualized by the scientific arguments about causes and risks.
- The media cannot assume understanding of the issues and must present the basics of the issues in an engaging and memorable way
- Scientists need to force these issues onto the political agenda in order for politicians to facilitate the debate, which centralizes the science and scientists, whilst clarifying the way this affects policy direction and emphasizing the importance of public participation.