Talk to Your Friends and Family
"Talking" is where cultural change begins. Without it, it’s impossible for a group of people to solve a problem. But talking about climate change can be uncomfortable - especially with friends and family who don't always agree.
However, it's one of the most important things you can do. You have a special relationship with everyone in your life. Because of this, you are the only person who can effectively talk with them about the climate crisis. Nobody will have the impact you will.
Tip: Climate denial tends to be rooted in a person's identity or ideology - all the facts in the world won't change their mind. To avoid frustrating arguments, start with shared values. These could be things like economic security or a faith-based sense of stewardship. Discuss how a changing climate puts that common ground at risk. Then explore solutions to protect what you both care about.
Practice makes perfect they say. So why not have a practice climate conversation?
Try this chatbot for finding common ground on climate change. It was developed by Smart Politics, a U.S. non-profit organization. It’s based on extensive experience with online dialogues and expertise in psychiatry and political psychology.
Discover how to talk to your friends and family where you live. Plus, get your personal climate action plan!
Why It Matters
People listen to people they know much more than people they don't. While celebrities, environmental groups, and politicians may be able to reach a lot of people, it's not always the most effective.
One-on-one conversations with neighbors, colleagues, friends and family can have a much bigger impact than you'd think. The key: be respectful and patient. Not everyone is ready to talk about it or accept the nature of the problem.