The Five D's of Climate Change Communication

Norwegian scholar Per Espen Stoknes has written extensively about climate change communication. The author and lecturer sums up five psychological barriers to acting on climate change: the five D's.


1) Distance. We can't see climate change. It feels distant from everyday concerns.

2) Doom. The doom and gloom of climate change makes us feel helpless and we disengage.

3) Dissonance. We deal with guilt about our contribution to climate change by rationalizing our behavior.

4) Denial. Denial is our last defense against fear and doubt. Denial is rarely the result of ignorance.

5) iDentity. We filter news and information through our identity, rejecting ideas that challenge our existing values and notions. A conservative may reject climate change because he is hearing about it from a liberal. His cultural identity overrides the facts.

Learn more about the barriers to acting on climate change at Why Don't We Care More?