From Watts Up With That?
Essay by Eric Worrall
Welcome to Jonestown. By Jonestown Institute, Attribution, Link
… “Over half think humanity is doomed, 56% worldwide, 51% in the UK, 73% in the Philippines,” Ms Hickman says.” …
Climate change is harming my mental health
By Morven Mckinnon
BBC Scotland News
Until two years ago Jennifer Newall was working at the forefront of climate change research.
“It dawned on me,” she says. “The physics behind this haven’t changed in my lifetime. They’re not going to change going forward.”
Jennifer says she realised action was needed urgently and she no longer had the passion or motivation to continue studying the effects.
‘Over half think humanity is doomed’
There is a growing recognition that environmental change affects not just physical but also mental health – although there is still relatively little research into the cognitive impact of it.
In 2021, Bath University lecturer, psychotherapist and researcher Caroline Hickman and her colleagues examined data from 10,000 young people, aged 16 to 25, living in 10 different countries.
About half of those who took part in the survey reported feeling sad, anxious, angry, powerless, helpless or guilty.
The study, published in Lancet Planetary Health, found that while threats faced in different countries varied – from food insecurity to pollution or flooding – there were similar levels of anxiety.
“Over half think humanity is doomed, 56% worldwide, 51% in the UK, 73% in the Philippines,” Ms Hickman says.
“So there’s more closeness in relationship. Being at a distance from it physically doesn’t protect you from the emotional and cognitive impact.”
…Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-65633082
The abstract of the study;
Climate anxiety in children and young people and their beliefs about government responses to climate change: a global survey
- Caroline Hickman, MSc †
- Elizabeth Marks, ClinPsyD †
- Panu Pihkala, PhD
- Prof Susan Clayton, PhD
- R Eric Lewandowski, PhD
- Elouise E Mayall, BSc
- Britt Wray, PhD
- Catriona Mellor, MBChB
- Lise van Susteren, MD
Climate change has important implications for the health and futures of children and young people, yet they have little power to limit its harm, making them vulnerable to climate anxiety. This is the first large-scale investigation of climate anxiety in children and young people globally and its relationship with perceived government response.
We surveyed 10 000 children and young people (aged 16–25 years) in ten countries (Australia, Brazil, Finland, France, India, Nigeria, Philippines, Portugal, the UK, and the USA; 1000 participants per country). Invitations to complete the survey were sent via the platform Kantar between May 18 and June 7, 2021. Data were collected on participants’ thoughts and feelings about climate change, and government responses to climate change. Descriptive statistics were calculated for each aspect of climate anxiety, and Pearson’s correlation analysis was done to evaluate whether climate-related distress, functioning, and negative beliefs about climate change were linked to thoughts and feelings about government response.
Respondents across all countries were worried about climate change (59% were very or extremely worried and 84% were at least moderately worried). More than 50% reported each of the following emotions: sad, anxious, angry, powerless, helpless, and guilty. More than 45% of respondents said their feelings about climate change negatively affected their daily life and functioning, and many reported a high number of negative thoughts about climate change (eg, 75% said that they think the future is frightening and 83% said that they think people have failed to take care of the planet). Respondents rated governmental responses to climate change negatively and reported greater feelings of betrayal than of reassurance. Climate anxiety and distress were correlated with perceived inadequate government response and associated feelings of betrayal.
Climate anxiety and dissatisfaction with government responses are widespread in children and young people in countries across the world and impact their daily functioning. A perceived failure by governments to respond to the climate crisis is associated with increased distress. There is an urgent need for further research into the emotional impact of climate change on children and young people and for governments to validate their distress by taking urgent action on climate change.
The fact is there is zero evidence global warming would reduce the survival prospects of humanity, quite the opposite.
Even if, and this is a big if, some nations became intolerably hot, vast regions of other nations like Canada, which are currently only marginally inhabitable, would become temperate climate paradises.
Anyone who disputes my description of Canada as “marginally habitable” due to extreme cold needs to explain why 90% of Canadians live within 100 miles from the southern border. The northern part of Canada sometimes drops below the surface temperature of Mars.
There is substantial evidence that humans would do very well indeed if the world warmed. Monkeys emerged as a significant presence in the fossil record during the PETM, Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, when temperatures were at least 5C hotter than today. Our monkey ancestors thrived in the warmth of the PETM and spread across much of the world, only to retreat when the world cooled.
Rapid Asia–Europe–North America geographic dispersal of earliest Eocene primate Teilhardina during the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum
Edited by Jeremy A. Sabloff, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia, PA, and approved June 9, 2006
July 25, 2006
103 (30) 11223-11227
True primates appeared suddenly on all three northern continents during the 100,000-yr-duration Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum at the beginning of the Eocene, ≈55.5 mya. The simultaneous or nearly simultaneous appearance of euprimates on northern continents has been difficult to understand because the source area, immediate ancestors, and dispersal routes were all unknown. Now, omomyid haplorhine Teilhardinais known on all three continents in association with the carbon isotope excursion marking the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum. Relative position within the carbon isotope excursion indicates that Asian Teilhardina asiatica is oldest, European Teilhardina belgicais younger, and North American Teilhardina brandti and Teilhardina americana are, successively, youngest. Analysis of morphological characteristics of all four species supports an Asian origin and a westward Asia-to-Europe-to-North America dispersal for Teilhardina. High-resolution isotope stratigraphy indicates that this dispersal happened in an interval of ≈25,000 yr. Rapid geographic dispersal and morphological character evolution in Teilhardina reported here are consistent with rates observed in other contexts.Read more: https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.0511296103
The primates reached North America through Greenland and Canada. Conditions were benign enough in the Arctic that tropical weather loving primates crossed regions which are now buried under permanent glaciers.
Given this irrefutable proof that a warm climate is good for primates, why do so many people, even some with scientific training, cling to the psychologically damaging fantasy that if the temperature climbs a little we’re all doomed? Why are kids terrified daily in classrooms, to the point some of them destroy themselves with hard drugs, or commit suicide?
One can only speculate what motivates such trauma, why some people find it easier to cling to damaging fantasies than to look at the evidence. But looking back through history, it’s easy to identify many similar episodes of apocalyptic belief – Jonestown, fear of the bomb, fear of Covid, fear of witches, it’s a long list.
The only relief if you can call it that, is that belief in the climate apocalypse is rapidly being displaced by fear of malevolent AI. Across the world, governments are moving to “contain” this new imaginary threat. I suspect fear of AI if anything will be even worse than the climate crisis, because AI is all around us.
But during the transition to the new imaginary threat we may if we are lucky gain a few years of peace, during which the brainwashing messages imposed on kids are confused and ineffectual. There may be a short period of time when our children to grow and thrive without being brutalised daily by authoritatively compelling messages of certain doom.