[ExI] Global catastrophic risk report

Anders Sandberg anders at aleph.se
Sun May 1 21:56:24 UTC 2016

On 2016-05-01 19:32, spike wrote:
> I find it most striking the catastrophic failure in translating the 
> scientific consensus on climate change with the public perception of 
> climate change.  For instance, my best guess on scientific consensus 
> is about 2C in the next century.  Is that about the consensus now?  
> This would be accompanied by about a 20 cm rise in sea level?  Anyone 
> know the best estimate of the models?

I guess the 2014 IPCCC is as mainstream as you can go. 2C and 20cm is 
about median of their scenarios: 

> If you ask especially the younger set, the consensus will be waaaay 
> more and faster change.  So there is an enormous disparity in public 
> perception and the scientific community, with the disparity getting 
> dramatically larger as you get younger than currently college age.
This is a bit like popular preceptions of risk, where risks commonly 
reported in media (murder, terrorism, exotic diseases) are overestimated 
by many times, while less reported risks (falls, auto accidents, stroke) 
are underestimated. Peope get more worried about being a victim of crime 
the more tv they watch.

Of course, thinking climate change will be drastic and intense does not 
preclude thinking not much will change in one's personal future - people 
are really inconsistent between near and far mode thinking. A survey of 
risk perceptions showed that many in the public expect apocalyptic 
disaster in their lifetime, yet do not seem to act on it (by lowering 
their time horizon).

Anders Sandberg
Future of Humanity Institute
Oxford Martin School
Oxford University

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