This week we published the posts listed below. The posts suggest that, when it comes to climate change, we should listen to generalists in addition to subject matter experts.
One of the many challenges that we face when talking about climate change is figuring out who to believe. At events such as the recent COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland much of the reporting featured statements from many self-proclaimed experts. Yet we need to ask, “What is their authority? What makes them an expert? Why should I give credibility to what they say? What does the word ‘expert’ even mean in such a new and difficult to understand topic?”
With regard to climate change reporters often grant the status of "expert" to climate scientists. The catch is that no one can be an expert in more than a tiny piece of the climate change puzzle. And climate science is itself divided into narrower areas of expertise such as the effect of cloud cover, ocean acidification or solar cycles. Each one of these topics is immensely complex and requires much research and analysis.
If we are to listen to generalists, it is suggested that they possess the following attributes.
The Golden Mean;
Tipping Points; and
Broadly speaking, there are three types of organization that can take climate action. They are governments (national and international), business and industry, and individuals and small group. All are important, all are needed and there is a lot of overlap between them. However, we have mainly relied on governments to take the lead. They have failed to do so.
Businesses — including the oil companies — are, however, providing effective leadership. That leadership, combined with technical innovation, may help us avert the worst of the climate crisis. Only time will tell. The hour is late; the hour is very late.
We also published a matching video.
Governments — both national and international — talk a good game regarding climate change, but they seem to achieve very little. We compare the optimism of COP21 in the year 2015 with the gloom associated with COP26 in 2021. The mismatch between words and action is becoming ever more apparent.