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Reframing Climate Change Now

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6. Talk about economic opportunities for American jobs in alternative energy development, jobs that cannot be offshored and ones that will protect us from depending on foreign nations for our energy.


7. Point out that one reason fossil fuel prices seem lower than green energy alternatives is that the profits-rich fossil fuel industry receives 4 billion dollars of taxpayer funded subsidies.(5) That makes the cost of alternative energy seem artificially high. If doing a cartoon video for YouTube, you might try out "1% fossil fuel vampires," (not the cute romantic ones), or "1% fossil fuel crooks."    

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8. Talk about "carbon fees" and "carbon rebates," not a "carbon tax." "Tax" is dead on arrival. A promising new legislative approach along these lines has been pioneered by the Citizens Climate Lobby.(6)

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Remember that Americans like to be the "can do" people, who can fix things, invent new stuff, find a way out, do the new thing, and act in an optimistic way. What we need now is to get mainstream Americans doing more local actions to prevent worse climate damage.   If we can get enough buy-in at the local level, it will build momentum for the national programs we must have.   So let's get cracking, people, there is no time to waste. Reframing climate change is the most important thing we can do about it right now.

Susan C. Strong is the founder and executive director of The Metaphor Project, http://www.metaphorproject.org" http://www.metaphorproject.org>, and author of our   new book, Move Our Message: How To Get America's Ear (The Metaphor Project, 2012, 172 pp, trade paperback, $10, available on our site). The Metaphor Project has been helping progressives mainstream their messages since 1997.



1. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/16/science/earth/in-heartland-institute-leak-a-plan-to-discredit-climate-teaching.html?pagewanted=2&emc=eta1 and "Lapse damages reputation of climate scholar," by Peter Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, 2.22.12, pp.1 & 4.

2. http://www.yesmagazine.org/planet/why-im-suing-the-federal-government
3. Excellent examples can be found at <http://climateprotectioncampaign.org/>.

4. http://m.greenbiz.com/17574/show/2077d61eedca957c3cdefebe2bcbb95e/

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5. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/02/us/politics/obama-calls-for-an-end-to-subsidies-for-oil-and-gas-companies.html?emc=eta1

6 . Check the site http://citizensclimatelobby.org/ for the PDF about the Carbon Fee and Dividend Act: http://citizensclimatelobby.org/files/images/FeeAndDividendLegProposal081811.pdf  



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Susan C. Strong, Ph.D., is the founder and executive director of the Metaphor Project. She is also the author of our new book, MOVE OUR MESSAGE: HOW TO GET AMERICA'S EAR, available on our website. The mission of the Metaphor Project is helping (more...)

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