Title

Ice is Melting While Discussions of Global Warming Freeze

Lead Author Major

Environmental Studies

Lead Author Status

Senior

Format

Oral Presentation

Faculty Mentor Name

Karrigan Bork

Faculty Mentor Email

kbork@pacific.edu

Faculty Mentor Department

Geological and Environmental Sciences

Abstract/Artist Statement

As the threat of global warming becomes evermore prominent, a cohesive course of action regarding this issue becomes less and less feasible for the United States. Debate about global warming divides sharply along party lines, which has moved discussion of the problem away from science and into a vicious cycle of partisan political debate. In the 1980s, ozone depletion posed a similar threat to the globe, and nations all over the world, including the United States, stepped up and addressed the problem through the Montreal Protocol. What can the success of the Montreal Protocol teach about ongoing efforts to address global warming?

This research dives into the events leading up to the establishment of the Montreal Protocol, including the scientific discovery of ozone depletion and the political reactions to this. The research then analyses parallels between these events and current efforts to address global warming science to document key similarities and differences. Through this comparison, this research seeks to identify why the United States has failed to address global warming. Findings indicate that though both scenarios played out in strikingly similar ways, involving industry resistance and avid counter-claims movements, ozone depletion was ultimately addressed upon discovery of what has come to be known as the ozone “hole” over Antarctica. This discovery created the political urgency needed to achieve ratification of the Montreal Protocol.

Global warming is less easily indicated by one significant discovery. It is a cumulative phenomenon, making a similar catalyst unlikely in this case. Industry push-back and the public perception of mixed information on global warming research further hinders progress. Since the same urgency which propelled Montreal cannot be expected to similarly launch global warming efforts, the identified obstacles facing warming mitigation must be confronted directly.

Location

DeRosa University Center, Room 211

Start Date

28-4-2018 1:40 PM

End Date

28-4-2018 2:00 PM

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Apr 28th, 1:40 PM Apr 28th, 2:00 PM

Ice is Melting While Discussions of Global Warming Freeze

DeRosa University Center, Room 211

As the threat of global warming becomes evermore prominent, a cohesive course of action regarding this issue becomes less and less feasible for the United States. Debate about global warming divides sharply along party lines, which has moved discussion of the problem away from science and into a vicious cycle of partisan political debate. In the 1980s, ozone depletion posed a similar threat to the globe, and nations all over the world, including the United States, stepped up and addressed the problem through the Montreal Protocol. What can the success of the Montreal Protocol teach about ongoing efforts to address global warming?

This research dives into the events leading up to the establishment of the Montreal Protocol, including the scientific discovery of ozone depletion and the political reactions to this. The research then analyses parallels between these events and current efforts to address global warming science to document key similarities and differences. Through this comparison, this research seeks to identify why the United States has failed to address global warming. Findings indicate that though both scenarios played out in strikingly similar ways, involving industry resistance and avid counter-claims movements, ozone depletion was ultimately addressed upon discovery of what has come to be known as the ozone “hole” over Antarctica. This discovery created the political urgency needed to achieve ratification of the Montreal Protocol.

Global warming is less easily indicated by one significant discovery. It is a cumulative phenomenon, making a similar catalyst unlikely in this case. Industry push-back and the public perception of mixed information on global warming research further hinders progress. Since the same urgency which propelled Montreal cannot be expected to similarly launch global warming efforts, the identified obstacles facing warming mitigation must be confronted directly.