Point 5: No exaggerating

Abandoning the planet cartoon.Illustration courtesy Ian Webster/CRED

Address scientific and climate uncertainties. Don’t overstate things, but anticipate that there are crucial words that scientists use differently than the general public. (There’s a good list on page 27 of the guide.) When scientists say “uncertainty” for example, the public hears “not knowing.” CRED suggests “range” as a better word.

It quotes California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger: “If 98 doctors say my son is ill and needs medication and two say ‘No, he doesn’t, he is fine,’ I will go with the 98. It’s common sense–the same with climate change. We go with the majority, the large majority.”