Whether the world is ready to accept this or not, Global Warming is real and is a serious threat to our planet. “I am not a believer,” President Trump said on a radio show in September 2015. “Unless somebody can prove something to me, I believe there’s weather.” Most of his fellow Republicans and many other politicians across the world believe than climate change is a hoax.
According to Think Progress, 59% of Republican followers deny global warming. Science itself disagrees with these nonbelievers; about 97% of climate scientists insist climate change is real. Take a look at carbon levels in the atmosphere:
And this temperature graph:
Even after the startling disclosure of these facts, conservative commentators have gone so far to say climate change is a “hoax”. Many of the large oil corporations and their political pawns have a financial motive to ignore these facts, but could there could be a deeper physiological reason?
It is of the human nature to want to be right. According to Dr. Robert Gifford, an environmental psychologist, “Nobody wants to be wrong, and that elicits confirmation bias, which is when we seek out information that confirms that we believe to be true.” In looking for the knowledge that we are right, we avoid having inconsistent beliefs and thoughts.
So companies like Exxon Mobil who have a financial interest in fossil fuels will not want to acknowledge the threat of climate change, because doing so would force them to address some uncomfortable questions about how might be contributing to environmental destruction. This in turn causes the dissonance, then, creates tension. Usually when a person who is overloaded with a lot of tension will want to get rid of it in the easiest way possible. In this case, that means finding a way to believe that climate change is fake is not a big deal.
Maybe then, this battle is not about whether scientists are correct. Could it be that the battle is in our brain and that we are battling ourselves?