The Potential of Environmental Psychology to Alleviate Climate Change

Issa Nduku Etemesi, Sirmah Peter Kipkosgei

Abstract


Environmental degradation and climate change issues have become inevitable discussions both at national and global levels. The devastating change is unequivocal as the world faces heightened rates of temperatures leading to escalated rise in sea levels rendering thousands of people homeless. More than often whenever time global warming is mentioned, most ecologist, environmentalist, and conservationists’ mind is perturbed with the exacerbated loss of biodiversity; daunting rates of deforestation; water scarcity; the loss of soil fertility; increasing soil salinity; loss of habitats; natural catastrophes; air pollution; diminishing fossil reserves; ecosystem imbalances; and disturbances not forgetting the escalated populous pressure on the limited natural resources and conflicts between man and the environment. The threats and shortages cannot be assumed. Calls for man to reconcile with the environment have been voiced extensively but not sufficient enough to restore and preserve the environment. Climate change and environmental obliteration is not the problem, but humanity is. The problem starts and ends with humanity. The need to save and recreate our environment is imminent and requires multidisciplinary collaborative efforts stemming from natural resource management fields to social sciences. Environmental degradation is due to the human behaviors and the coexistence with their surroundings. Psychologists have an indispensable role in evaluating and addressing the integration and interrelatedness between man and the environmental problems. They have the potential of promoting ecologically sensitive and more sustainable behaviors among people by applying the psychological principle based on the population’s attitudes, values, norms, beliefs, cultural history, and heritage. The paper shall elucidate the potential of environmental psychologists in alleviating the environmental degradation and climate change consequences by evaluating the system thinking theory, human dimensions, and ecological resilience.


Keywords


environmental psychology, environmental degradation, climate change, prevention, and protection

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