Despite the enormous body of research proving the facts of climate change — there still exists a hostile, reluctant climate around the topic within certain political circles. Due to cognitive dissonance and other factors, many people choose not to believe in climate change.
In order to make real change, we need real input – global input; and this starts with global acceptance of the reality of climate change.
How do we change the climate on climate change?
Lawrence Krauss and the Origins Project Foundation
Lawrence Krauss is a theoretical physicist and cosmologist, and was formerly a professor at multiple universities. Krauss’ work largely involves issues dealing with the beginning and ending of the universe, and its relationship to our understanding of fundamental forces. He has written 11 books, and founded ASU’s Interplanetary Initiative.
Throughout his career, Lawrence has bridged science with culture, which led him to founding the Origins Project Foundation. This organization brings together well-known scientists, artists, and film makers, to talk about the most important issues happening in the world.
“As I’ve often said — I don’t mind making predictions about 2 trillion years in the future, because they’re easier to make and no one’s around to check them anyway,” Krauss humorously told me. Krauss tackles the biggest questions in life — which are sometimes the hardest to find answers to.
Krauss views the world through a rational, data-driven lens. And yet — he also exhibits flexibility in his thinking, and an ability to appreciate cultural influences.
Krauss told me, “You can’t get ought from is – as Hume said. Logic can take us most of the way, but there is a cultural value judgement that helps to create morality and isn’t based in pure logic.”
Krauss cares about connecting science and culture, and has formed the Origins Project Foundation as a way of bringing important discussions and information to the general public. The goal of the Origins Project Foundation is to “enrich your perspective of your place in the cosmos by providing access to the people who are driving the future of society in the 21st century, and to the ideas that are changing our understanding of ourselves and our world.”
The foundation provides encouragement for people to think about important, global issues.
As Krauss said, “Since public policy depends on an informed electorate, [it is important that] people have access to information.”
Krauss authored The Physics of Climate Change, a book that helps people understand the reality and dangers of climate change.
As he mentioned, “A reason I wrote my book on the physics of climate change is that, A, it’s understandable, and B, it overcomes misconceptions […} it’s really fundamental basic physics that anyone can understand with a high school education.”
A global problem needs a global audience. With his book, Krauss aims to help educate the public about the perils climate change — and also its causes.
Education, as Krauss explained, is essential for sound rational thinking.
“If we are going to have sound and rational public policies, the first step is to understand what the reality is. If you don’t know what reality is then your policies are unlikely to be rational.”
Through education, we can help people make informed decisions — and gradually make the world a better place.
“We can help people assess the reality of the world around them, allowing them to make more sensible, rational decisions about their life, and the lives of people around them,” Krauss told me.
I then asked Krauss why some people are reluctant to believe in climate change.
“Some people suspect scientists of being liberal idealogues, and therefor people distrust what they say when it comes to public policy. Part of it is that they’ve been told lies by politicians and other people. Also because it implies danger about the future, which is always nice to deny and avoid. And also because it implies we have to make some changes.”
We can perhaps change the narrative by having conversations and compelling people to challenge their preconceived beliefs. Creating trust by engaging in respectful debate, and by sharing scientific data, are two additional ways that we can spread awareness and understanding about climate change.
And finally, as Krauss said; “You can get people to think about things when you confront their misconceptions.” Being equipped with knowledge can empower you to confront others’ misconceptions – because you will have the toolset to do so.
Origins Project Foundation is on a mission to provide people with this toolset.