Climate Change is one of the most pressing issues facing humanity today. Understanding and responding to climate change has also become one of the most divisive issues in our culture.
It has become a political lightning rod and the schism between the scientific community and those who believe in the work of scientists and those who do not is deep. But one climate scientist, and devout Christian, says it doesn’t have to be this way.
On this Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe speaks with atmospheric scientist Katharine Hayhoe about bridging the gap between scientist and Christians.
“It must being with something we both agree on and value.” Hayhoe said. “Just have a conversation with somebody about who they are, what they enjoy doing, and what are they really passionate about.”
Hayhoe said that can be anything from winter sports, to birding or hunting. All which have been affected by climate change. She’s already seen the effects in her home state of Texas with hotter and drier summers. As for Iowa, there’s the influx of heavy rain, flooding and extended heat waves. Hayhoe says we’re seeing the results of climate change today, but scientist have been able to measure our carbon footprint as far back as the 1850s.
“When we compare our models to what happened in the distant past, when we did see conditions that were as warm as today, we know that we’re likely underestimating the impact,” Hayhoe said. “If anything, we are likely bias in the wrong direction – which is to underestimate.”
Hayhoe has served as a lead author for the Second, Third, and Fourth U.S. National Climate Assessments, she hosts the PBS digital Series, Global Weirding: Climate, Politics and Religion. Hayhoe will be giving the Aldo Leopold Distinguished Lecture at The University of Northern Iowa on Thursday October 24 at 7 PM, as well as a keynote luncheon address at the Growing Sustainable Communities Conference in Dubuque on Friday October 25. On Saturday, October 26, Hayhoe be in Hiawatha as part of Called To Climate Action: A statewide interfaith gathering.
Katharine Hayhoe, atmospheric scientist