Accepted Paper:

Are revitalization movements the only likely outcomes to the apparent success of climate change denial efforts?  


Solomon H Katz (University of Pennsylvania)

Paper short abstract:

Stifling scientific work about fossil fuel carbon footprints & climate change is producing hopelessness among scientists about possibly lowering GHG to control temperature change & irreversible tipping points. This paper explores the potentials, risks, & benefits of revitalization movement responses.

Paper long abstract:

The potential climate mitigation goals of the Paris accord are widely believed by experts to be insufficient to stop the 2-degree temperature tipping point that is predicted to produce irreversible effects of polar melting and sea water rise and vast changes in weather extremes that will negatively impact food production on a global basis. This problem is also severely threatened by the current election of a climate change denial of the US President-elect and the potential dysregulation of the efforts of the various branches of the US government that are designed to achieve and control these GHG lowering efforts. Also, the threatened cutbacks of efforts to control, research and publicize climate predictions together with the deliberate disinformation efforts by industries to protect their financial gain by discrediting them, are producing a profound sense of disillusionment and hopelessness on the part of the community of scientists globally and particularly in the US. This paper reviews the evidence of the degree of the hopelessness and uses AFC Wallace's anthropological model of revitalization movements to determine the degree to which this kind social movement will occur in the future and the likelihood that it will help solve the climate problem.

Panel WIM-WHF08
Social science and the climate crisis: finding sources of hope