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March 2, 2010
Who's Following Earth's Climate Responsibly?

This is posted in despondency, if not despair. There could hardly be an issue of more concern and eventual impact than whether our planet's climate is warming. The scientific consensus appears to be that it is.

Even if there wasn't such a consensus, there seems to be enough concern among climate scientists that, in prudence, we should be acting as though the climate is warming. However, there could hardly be a more contentious issue than climate change.

The doubters are becoming louder, it seems, aided by current reports and photos of possibly the worst winter on record. (There may be more snow, say some reports, because of more moisture in the atmosphere.)

Truly, it's a situation ripe for the most enlightened public relations project -- note that we don't say "campaign" -- ever.

Sorting out what's being said about climate change and seeking to present an understandable continuing account of the issue would be a great public service. Maybe it's already being done. A Web site like Solveclimate.com might be the answer, though it may not be focused enough (I just happened upon it, so I don't really know.)

Such a site could track leading indicators for and against global warming -- let the evidence accrue.  

Controversies over science don't lend themselves to ready solutions. They stir emotional responses along with conscientious interpretation. They require patience and, above all, continuity. These may not be qualities readily associated with public relations projects, but could a higher challenge exist than tracking climate change responsibly?

Maybe it's already being done, but what do you, as PR practitioners, know about that? Are there diligent, persuasive climate sites out there already? Should there be? Let us know. 

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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