Spring has finally sprung — and with it, a new Science Soapbox episode! Stepping onto this month’s soapbox, we have one of our favorite climate scientists, Dr. Katharine Hayhoe. An atmospheric scientist at Texas Tech University, Dr. Hayhoe is known not only for her leadership in climate science, but also for her phenomenal outreach and communication work. She has effectively joined her identity as both an evangelical Christian and a staunch advocate for climate action to engage with communities that are traditionally thought to be skeptical of science. Her work is a testament to the power of bringing our full identities to our science and outreach efforts. We’ve been following Dr. Hayhoe on social media for years and were thrilled to chat with her about her approach to public engagement and how (and why) she finds hope in the face of our changing climate.
Here are some of the links and references mentioned during the show:
- Dr. Hayhoe hosts an awesome show, Global Weirding, which is produced by KTTZ Texas Tech Public Media and distributed by PBS Digital Studios. Science communicators should most definitely check out one of Maryam’s favorite episodes: “If I just explain the facts, they’ll get it, right?”
- Dr. Hayhoe mentioned George Marshall’s Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change, which has influenced some of her thinking around climate communication
- When deciding whether and how to engage with trolls, Dr. Hayhoe cited The Six Americas of Global Warming by the Yale Climate Change Communication Program
- Dr. Hayhoe co-authored the 2017 report, the US National Climate Assessment
- We ended the interview asking Dr. Hayhoe what makes her optimistic for the future of climate action. She cited the truly bipartisan Citizens’ Climate Lobby; that one of the largest military bases, Fort Hood, went solar last year, saving about $1.5 million in electricity costs; and that solar energy is taking off in Africa with rent-to-own solar panels on the rise.
- If listening to this interview wasn’t enough, you should most definitely check out this Quartz interview with Dr. Hayhoe: The Christian climate professor bridging the gap between science and faith
This episode was recorded on April 17, 2018 in the Rockefeller University Outreach Lab. Special thanks to Visager for music.