The great majority of Europeans know that climate change is occurring however seem to think that it won’t affect them personally
. But climate change is already affecting us — so why don’t people realise that? The reason has to do with a mixture of politics and psychology.
Human beings aren’t great at dealing with situations that are high-risk but don’t happen that often. For example, think of earthquake insurance, for instance. Though there’s a 99 percent chance that there’s going to be a magnitude 6.7 earthquake in the next 30 years in Californi
a, the probability that it’s going to happen in the next year and is going to affect me is much lower.
Now apply that kind of thinking to climate change, which is often framed as a catastrophic event. Unfortunately, scare tactics don’t always work to change people’s beliefs and behaviour
. For people who do accept that climate change is real, it might feel like an insurmountable problem that’s just too big for any individual to tackle. The reality – we all have a part and responsibility to act for the sake of our own health and wellbeing and for the generations that follow.
Here are five ways the climate crisis will affect all of us in a very personal way