Media Blog

Africans Blame Themselves For Global Warming

BBC:

Many Africans blame themselves for climate change even though fossil fuel emissions there are less than 4% of the global total, a new survey suggests.

The report, the most extensive survey ever conducted on public understanding of the issue, found that others blamed God for changes in weather patterns.

It suggests dealing with climate change poses similar challenges to HIV and Aids, as people lack key information.

It was carried out for the BBC World Service trust and the British Council.

[. . .]

The report found a near-universal sense that what people call “weather” is changing and affecting lives.

But most of those interviewed did not connect these changes with global causes such as emissions of carbon dioxide.

Instead people tend to blame themselves or their peers for local environmental degradation and some see the changes as a form of divine punishment.

Anna Godfrey, research manager for the BBC World Service Trust, says this religious perspective could help in climate education.

“One of the big stumbling blocks is language with many people not understanding the terminology of climate change, and often there are no words for these concepts in local languages,” said Ms Godfrey.

Great. Next we’ll hear how we need a billion dollars to educate the poor of the world just how threatening the United States is to their existence.

But I do love this line:

The report found a near-universal sense that what people call “weather” is changing and affecting lives.

Yes, put “weather” in scare quotes. I’d like to see the countries that were polled, etc. For example, In Zimbabwe, everything Al Gore says could be true, and Mugabe is still exponentially more at fault for his people’s lot in life than any amount of extra CO2 in the atmosphere.

Recommended

The Latest