Why is there so much preoccupation with atmospheric CO2 concentrations and reducing anthropogenic CO2 emissions when it is well documented in the peer-reviewed scientific literature that the CO2 contribution to the overall greenhouse effect is so weak that it can be easily supplanted by small changes in clouds and water vapor, or natural climate-changing constituents?


Thursday, 3 June 2010

Children frightened or anxious about climate

This blog has two primary areas for investigation:

1. Examples of children being frightened about climate
2. Examples of children being fed misleading information about climate

Here is an example relevant to the first of these.

In 2008, an initiative called 'The Climate Change Schools Project' was launched in the North East of England, through one of the many 'Science Learning Centres' in that country.

The website for it is here: https://www.sciencelearningcentres.org.uk/centres/north-east/climate-change-schools-project/introduction.

They describe themselves as follows:

‘The Project aims to put climate change at the heart of the national curriculum via an organic and pioneering network of ‘Climate Change Lead School’ who build climate change understanding and positive action from the ground-up. Visionary schools and teachers are at the core of this approach, though the focus of the Project is on young people – helping them to achieve a better understanding of the nuts and bolts of climate change science, as well as to discover solutions and explore how to positively adapt to the challenges brought by climatic changes over the coming decades.’

In July 2009, they published a progress report on their work to date. This included the following statements:

Significant (positive) shifts in responses to four of the attitudinal statements were observed for Year 5 students, that were not observed in the control group. At the second stage, Year 8 students were more likely to accept the idea that climate change is a risk to them and that it will kill plants and animals.

‘There was a subset of younger students who became quite anxious about climate change, and some with worrying misconceptions about the world ending. This appeared to be prevalent in certain classes rather than across the board and is likely to have been influenced by a range of factors within and outside the project. This did not appear to be an issue at Key Stage 3. ‘

The report is available for download at the website given above.  The report is also available here: http://www.lauragrantassociates.co.uk/Resources/Resources/45/CCSP_evaluation_final_report_July09.pdf

Hat tip: http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2010/3/26/climate-change-in-schools.html


  1. I switch off when I hear the American classification of kids into 'year 5' etc.
    The US influence (of grades and schools - not of educational material, which is provided by the Marxist teaching unions and authorities under the aegis of the EU) pervades and spoils our systems of education.
    The insidious drift of this inculcation of children with a very hypothetical unsound myth is a scandal, there seems to me to be the unseen hand of the EU moving the puppet in all of this.
    When I attended my schools, there was no agenda other than to furnish children with the best education the school and the teaching staff could offer.
    There was an enormous effort in the early years to bring all pupils up to a certain standard in Maths(sums) and English, an admirable pursuit in my estimation.
    Attending the local secondary school, we learnt and built upon our basic education and learnt history, geography, science and of more abstract philosophies.
    We were left to make our own minds up, not steered in any way shape or form, this is how it should be (but is not) presently.

  2. I'm not necessarily opposed to teaching climate fairy tales in our schools. Most of these children will grow to become tough-minded, skeptical adults who recognize the lies, will have little tolerance for self-promoting propaganda and will be extremely distrustful of any ideas based on the premise that an unfettered state can somehow run things better.

  3. Climate Change is only a part of the problem in schools. By default they subscribe to any thesis that says that the West is exploiting the planet or others. And conversely that the "other" is living (apart from our interference) in Elysian harmony with each other and the planet. Thus Fairtrade is taught because it is "relevant" - of interest to the young. The fact that it wouldn't be of interest were it not taught, appears to negate that. No teacher, that I have asked, could think of any possible negative consequences arising from Fairtrade.

    I'd like to help by sending stuff that my kids are exposed to. By and large this has gone in the bin or back to school. However I saved this survey: Carbon Reduction Survey. Not particularly controversial - my only gripe with it is the fact that there are other reasons to conserve energy besides carbon reduction.

  4. Expenditure of public money in pursuit of unreal and unrealizable goals is unjustifiable at any time and particularly irritating in the current climate(!). However, we should have faith in the scepticism and innate bloody mindedness of school children (of all ages).
    We do not live in a dystopian Brave New World and ultimately the internal flaws within the CAGW case will lead the more intelligent and questioning actively to reject the thesis. Those more inclined to follow the orthodoxy will, at worst, be passive fellow travellers but will make little contribution to the debate.

    Brainwashing in direct contradiction of the empirical evidence does not have a good track record in any society and there is little reason to assume that it will be more effective in our culture than it has been in others.
    Pactum serva!

  5. More power to your elbow

  6. Hi, I found you through Bishop Hill's blog. I think yours is a very important blog, as teachers have to labour under wish-lists presented as facts. And having two teenage daughters, I'm very interested in indoctrination in our schools.

  7. spangled drongo4 June 2010 at 09:34

    The sad consequence of this will be the even greater lack of respect by kids for halls of learning.

  8. After climategate I decided to tell my other half's 12 year old daughter that the world was a good place and that she shouldn't be anxious about the future of the world. She told me that I was wrong, told me that it was obvious that we were all going to drown in a sea of rubbish because people didn't recycle enough.

  9. In the USA, NASA has launched a propaganda site for kids.


    It includes such 'facts' as:
    "# Earth has been getting warmer fast, causing lots of serious problems
    # Humans are causing this warming "

    And of course, the cartoon features a poor polar bear on a melting piece of ice who ends up in the disappearing Amazon forests.

  10. How do you create an identity on this site?

  11. Thank you for all these helpful comments.

  12. "...There was a subset of younger students who became quite anxious about climate change, and some with worrying misconceptions about the world ending..."

    Why have these people not been arrested for child abuse?