communicating_cc by iraqbalad


									The climate change communications initiative is led by Defra        Your guide
                                                                    to communicating
in partnership with the Energy Saving Trust, the Carbon Trust,
the Department of Trade and Industry, the Environment Agency, the
UK Climate Impacts Programme and the Department for Transport.

Crown Copyright 2006     Issued April 2006
                                                                    climate change
01–11      What is climate change and why
           do we need to communicate it?    This booklet is a guide to climate
12–19      Advice to help you communicate
                                            change, and how to communicate
           climate change                   about it to other people. It is part of
20         Find out more                    the Government’s commitment to
                                            improving people’s understanding
                                            of climate change. You can use this
                                            booklet to spread the message, and
                                            encourage other people to think
                                            about climate change.
                                            We want as many people as possible to      Use this booklet as an overall guide to
                                            tell the climate change story at a local   communicating about climate change,
                                            level, and we need your help to do this.   and the accompanying website
                                            You can explain why it’s happening, what as
                                            it means and what needs to be done.        a source of specific tools and ideas.
                                                                                       There is also a special fund to help
                                                                                       with the cost of creating climate
Acknowledgements:                                                                      change awareness activities, which                                                         you can apply to.
Oxford Scientific
Natural Visions/Alamy
Rosemary Greenwood/Ecoscene
Angela Hampton/Ecoscene
BBC Worldwide
Stefano Cagnoni/                                                                                       00/01
                     The blanket of gases that keeps the         Carbon dioxide is the main greenhouse
What exactly         surface of the earth warm and able to       gas, which causes climate change.
is climate change?   sustain life is getting thicker, trapping   Every tonne emitted in to the atmosphere
                     in more heat. This is caused by the         commits the world to more warming. We
                     release of greenhouse gases as we           can do something about it – every tonne
                     burn fossil fuels for energy and cut        of emissions avoided reduces the threat
                     down forests. The vast majority of          of climate change. This is why we need
                     scientists now agree that to avoid          to address this issue now, wherever we
                     radical changes in temperature in the       can. Everyone can do something to help.
                     future, action is urgently needed now.
                                                                 The climate has already started to
                     Tomorrow’s climate is today’s               change – we must do everything we can
                     challenge.                                  to stop further changes, and adapt to the
                                                                 new situation we find ourselves in.

                                                                                                  18th century –
                                                                                                    Beginning of
                                                                                             industrial revolution

                                                                                               1807 – Invention
                                                                                                     of internal
                                                                                             combustion engine

                                                                                                                       1896 – Link between CO2
                                                                                                                       emissions and global
                                                                                                                       warming proposed

                                                                                                    1900 – World
                                                                                                    population is
                                                                                                       1.6 billion

                                                                                                   1903 – Wright
                                                                                                  brothers make
                                                                                                  their first flight

                                                                                            1950s – Beginning of
                                                                                               dramatic increase
                                                                                                of CO2 emissions

                                                                                             1952 – First regular
                                                                                               jet airline service

                                                                                                                       1979 – World Climate
                                                                                                                       Conference recognises
                                                                                                                       importance of
                                                                                                                       climate change
                                                               The climate

                                                                                                                       1987 – Discovery of link
                                                               change story

                                                                                                                       between CO2 levels and
                                                                                                                       temperature going back
                                                                                                                       more than 100,000 years

                                                                                                                       1990 – Intergovernmental
                                                                                                                       Panel on Climate Change
                                                                                                                       reports Earth has warmed
                                                                                                                       0.5ºC in last 100 years

                                                                                                                       1998 – Hottest year
                                                                                                                       on record

                                                                                                                       2004 – Nine hottest
                                                                                                                       years on record within
                                                                                                    2005 – World       last ten years
                                                                                                    population is
                                                                                                      6.45 billion
        improved local environments.
        bring other positive benefits such
        as economic growth, new jobs and
                                               with understanding why we need to.
                                               The climate change story is ongoing.

        Many solutions already exist and can
                                               While we can’t stop the effects of what
                                               we’ve done in the past, we can influence
                                               the future. Tackling climate change starts
Acting together                                                                      What do people
                                                                                     think about climate

We need to help people understand         Initially we need to focus on making       Research shows that among the              Most people in the UK think that
that climate change is a serious          climate change easily understood           general public, few people understand      climate change:
challenge, but one that we can            and a ‘here and now’, ‘front of mind’      what is actually causing climate change.
do something about. We want to            issue. We also want people to have an                                                 – is confusing – they can’t see how
communicate a positive vision of          increased awareness of what needs          Barely half of the population think          it relates to them;
what we are collectively trying to        to be done to tackle it. We want to        they will be directly affected. Climate    – won’t affect them personally;
achieve. Our goal is that together this   avoid giving the impression that it is     change was ranked bottom of a              – is a problem for the future,
generation will tackle climate change.    solely the responsibility of individuals   list of key challenges facing the            not now; and
                                          to take action. Everyone in society –      UK in a recent survey.                     – can’t be affected by their individual
                                          government and its agencies, business,                                                  actions, because the problem
                                          industry and the public – needs            The first and most important thing is        is so big.
                                          to tackle climate change together.         to change the way people think about
                                                                                     climate change. Then we can try to         These are the challenges we need to
                                                                                     change their behaviour.                    face, but something can be done. Firstly,
06/07                                                                                                                           we need to change these attitudes.
                                   We are trying to change the way people
Current                            think about climate change. Here is a    Ideal attitudes
attitudes                          summary of some of the most important
                                   attitudes that we need to address.

                    People aren’t clear
                    what causes climate                                           People understand
                    change and don’t                                              climate change and         People see the
                    understand what needs                                         what is causing it.        impact it may have
                    to be done to tackle it.                                                                 on their lives.

 People don’t include
 climate change as
 an important issue
 when making                                   People think that
 decisions.                                    climate change won’t
                                               affect them personally.       People include climate
                                                                             change when making
                                                                                                        People feel
                                                                             their decisions and
                                                                                                        empowered and
                                                                             embrace the positive
                                                                                                        positive about
                                                                             changes that result.
                                                                                                        tackling climate
                        Climate change is
                        a depressing and
                        negative issue.

           When you’re communicating about           We want people to know that there
Our goal   climate change, there is a phrase that    is a co-ordinated effort under way to
           explains very clearly what we want to     tackle climate change. Everyone
           achieve. It’s a useful tool for summing   needs to be involved in rising to the
           up what climate change communication      challenge. To find out more, please visit:
           is about:                       

           Together this
           generation will tackle
           climate change.
           We also have a brand that has been
           created for use on government climate
           change communications:

                        What do you want your
Some advice             communications to achieve?
for new communicators
                        All good communications should make
                        their intended audience think, feel or do
                        something differently as a result.

                        We’re asking people to think differently
                        about climate change, and it requires
                        specific techniques. The clearer you can
                        be about what you want your audience
                        to do, the better.

                        For example, you might want your
                        audience to:

                        – understand that climate change
                          is happening now;
                        – understand why it is happening;
                        – understand that it affects the UK
                          and the region where they live;
                        – see the connection between everyday
                          life and climate change; or
                        – be aware of the need for immediate

                      It is important to be as specific as     – How do they feel about climate
Know who              possible about who you want to             change now?
you are talking to?   communicate with and how you’re          – What do they say about it?
                      going to do it. Understand as much       – How willing are they to take action?
                      as you can about who your audience       – What would it take to change
                      is, what they value, which media           their thinking?
                      they read/watch/listen to and whose      – Have others tried to talk to them
                      opinions they trust.                       about it in the past, and were
                                                                 they successful?
                      Once you know your audience, then you    – Have you got the time and money to
                      can ask questions about their attitude     communicate effectively with them?
                      to climate change.                       – Is there something they care
                                                                 passionately about that can be linked
                                                                 to the issue of climate change?

Creating a

Effective communication doesn’t have       Tone of voice                                Timing                                      your message work in a press release
to be big or expensive. Getting your       Different audiences respond to different     It’s important to plan your timing. Your    or an article instead of an ad? They’re
message across might simply be a           tones. If you’re speaking in public, you     message might be effective, but if your     both ways of getting information into
matter of sending a letter or an email,    need to use one style of language;           email gets delivered when everyone’s        newspapers and magazines for free.
speaking at an event, or making a          if you’re writing a press release for        at the Christmas party, it won’t be read.
phone call.                                newspaper editors, you need another.         Printers, advertisers, newspapers and       Ask the audience what they think
                                           Take time to consider which is right for     websites all need advance notice if you     Did it work for them? Did they
You know your audiences best – what        your audience.                               want their help. Keep a clear schedule      understand what you were trying
are they most likely to respond to?                                                     for your campaign and try to remain         to say? Did it make a difference?
                                           Partners                                     flexible, so you can make the most          All this information is valuable for
Consider the following ideas when          Time and money are always a                  of any opportunities to reach your          your next campaign.
planning your communications:              consideration. Climate change is a big       intended audience.
                                           issue that touches many different areas
Messages                                   – if you can link it to another issue with   Budget
Create some simple messages and try        its own campaign, you might be able          You’ll need a clear idea of how much
them out in different ways. Would they     to share resources. For example, if the      money you’ve got to work with, and what
work better in a press release, a report   IT department in your office wants to        it will buy. Budget planning minimises
or on a website?                           reduce the number of printer cartridges      the risk of missing opportunities when
                                           it has to buy, ask them if you can add       you need them most. For example, will
                                           a message to their communications
                                           about recycling old ones and the
                                           benefits to the climate.
Using different channels                                                               Communicating differently
                                                                                       when you’re communicating
                                                                                       climate change

There are thousands of different ways      targeted messages to specific               Research has shown that there are          – Don’t rely solely on logic, facts or even
to communicate your message, but it’s      audiences. However, beware of sending       some important issues you should             money-saving incentives – people
important to use those that will be most   people junk emails that they will ignore.   consider when you communicate                need to be inspired and provoked.
effective. Here are some examples of                                                   climate change:
different communication channels           Partnership marketing                                                                  – Encourage discussion between
that could carry a message about           Promotions, sponsorship, loyalty/           – People are rarely motivated to act         individuals in your audiences
climate change:                            coupons, special offers                       by threats to their long-term survival     – debate raises awareness.
                                           These allow you to harness the                – think about how many people
Traditional media                          marketing power of other, larger              still smoke despite the known risks.     – Associate climate change with people
Newspapers, radio stations,                organisations cheaply.                        In fact, when it comes to climate          your audience admire or respect, or
TV stations, magazines                                                                   change, people are not even normally       with things they care about, like home
Traditional media like these have large    Internal communications                       motivated by concern for their             improvement or local green spaces.
audiences and are trusted. However,        Reports, brochures, newsletters               children’s future.
they can require you to plan a long time   These allow you to communicate with                                                    – Be consistent in your use of language
in advance, they can be expensive and      a specific, captive audience.               – Don’t create fear about climate            and your explanation of climate
you might not get the same level of                                                      change without showing what people         change – this will help it stick in
response as from other, more targeted      Direct marketing                              can do about it. If people can simply      people’s minds. See the ‘Our goal’
communications.                            Direct mail, cold calling                     avoid frightening issues, or put them      pages in this booklet.
                                                                                         to the back of their minds, they will.
                                           These marketing methods have the
Events                                     advantage of communicating with
Speeches, conferences, forums                                                          – It’s often unhelpful to criticise
                                           individuals in a very targeted way – you
You can communicate with people                                                          behaviour that people consider
                                           can know exactly who has read/heard
personally, address their individual                                                     normal in their home or family.
                                           your message and how they responded.
concerns and deliver your message                                                        Instead, make behaviour that reduces
with feeling.                                                                            the threat of climate change seem
                                           For more communications information,
                                                                                         positive and desirable.
                                           please visit:
New media                        
Websites, email, text messages
These are an excellent way of sending
                                                                                                   Use this checklist as a quick
Other resources                                                                   Communications   reference guide for the progress
available online                                                                  checklist        of your campaigns.

                                                                                                   1. Decide who you want your
                                                                                                      communications to target.
                                                                                                   2. Find out what they currently think
                                                                                                      about climate change.
                                                                                                   3. Decide how you want your audience
                                                                                                      to change their attitude.
                                                                                                   4. Define the reason they should change.
                                                                                                   5. Relate it to an aspect of their lives
                                                                                                      they understand and care about.
                                                                                                   6. Decide the voice your communication
                                                                                                      will use.
As well as the guidance in this booklet,   – case studies of real life examples                    7. Decide the channel your
you can get more help communicating          of how individuals and groups have                       communication will appear on.
climate change at our website:               made a difference;                                    8. Check the timing and budget needed                                                                           for your message.
                                           – a short film you can download
The website has a range of resources         which explains how climate change
including:                                   is happening; and

– the truth behind many myths about        – surveys of people’s attitudes to
  climate change;                            climate change.

– useful facts and the science that will   More and more information will be
  help you explain what climate change     added to the website over the coming
  is and why it is so important;           months to help you understand and
                                           communicate climate change.


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