How to talk climate? Engaging all EU citizens in the climate discussion

Climate science and technology are complex topics with a high potential for controversy. But ensuring people adequately understand the climate challenges is an essential element of the global response to the climate crisis.

More than ever before, the European Commission is driving Europe’s ambition to lead the fight against climate change. The European Green Deal announced by Commission President Von der Leyen in December 2019 is testament to that. As part of the Green Deal, the Commission launched a European Climate Pact to give everyone a voice and space to design new climate actions, share information, launch grassroots activities and showcase solutions that others can follow.

Whereas many EU citizens understand the urgency of global warming, the topic highlights certain social and economic divides. For example, the less privileged can perceive the debate as elitist. While the happy few worry about the end of the world, the majority worries about the end of the month, as was witnessed during the Gilet Jaunes movement in France.

‘Climate literacy’ is playing an increasingly important role in helping citizens to understand the issues and orient them towards action and social change. Inaccessible language and the failure to create an inclusive debate around climate change risks delaying citizen engagement and action.

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How to talk climate? Engaging all EU citizens in the climate discussion

 

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