Climate Messaging Guidance

URL: http://potentialenergycoalition.org/global-report/

One of the broadest and most comprehensive global message testing studies conducted on climate change provides guidance for effective climate change related messaging.


Potential Energy is a global, nonprofit marketing firm creating public demand for climate solutions. In partnership with the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and the Meliore Foundation, it carried out one of the broadest and most comprehensive global message testing studies conducted on climate change.

The following are some of the study's findings.

  • On average across the 23 countries in the study, 77% of people agreed with the statement, "It is essential that our government does whatever it takes to limit the effects of climate change" and just over 10% disagreed.
  • In randomized controlled trial message tests, the most effective narrative lifted support for climate action by 11 percentage points.
  • "In every country in the study, the 'later is too late' narrative outperformed messages focused on economic opportunity, fighting injustice, improving health, or even preventing extreme weather." 
  • Framing with the words mandate, ban or phaseout garnered about 9 (and up to 20) percentage points less support than those without those words. On the other hand, framing that spoke about upgrading, setting standards, making solutions accessible, and reducing dependency had significantly more support.
  • "Fear versus hope is the wrong debate. The big motivator is protecting what we love ... protecting the planet for the next generation." That message beat out protecting ourselves from weather and pollution, and was 12 times more effective than talking about jobs and economic impacts.
  • While the U.S.A. has contributed about 25% of carbon emissions to-date, and represents 25% of the world's GDP, its citizens show the lowest support for climate policies in the G20.
  • Global support for taking immediate action has been growing, and in all countries, citizens felt "it's the respopnsibility of this generation to solve climate change and leave a thriving world for our children and grandchildren." 
Topics: Environment:, Climate change mitigation, Energy efficiency, Sustainable transportation, Sustainable agriculture and wildlife conservation
Resource Type: promotional materials, consumer research
Publisher: Potential Energy
Date Last Updated: 2023-12-28 12:56:07

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