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Paper: Teaching Climate Change
Volume: 443, Earth and Space Science: Making Connections in Education and Public Outreach
Page: 43
Authors: O'Donoghue, A.
Abstract: In giving public presentations about climate change, we face the barriers of mis-information in the political debate and lack of science literacy that extends to science phobia for some. In climate issues, the later problem is compounded by the fact that the science—reconstruction of past climate through the use of proxy sources, such as isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen—is complex, making it more challenging for general audiences. Also, the process of science, particularly peer review, is suspected by some to be a way of keeping science orthodox instead of keeping it honest. I approach these barriers by focusing on the data and the fact that the data have been carefully acquired over decades and centuries by dedicated people with no political agenda. I have taught elderhostel courses twice and have given many public talks on this topic. Thus I have experience in this area to share with others. I would also like to learn of others’ approaches to the vast amount of scientific information and getting past the politics. A special interest group on climate change will allow those of us to speak on this important topic to share how we approach both the science and the politics of this issue.
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