"Even amid a disaster-filled summer marked by record heat, climate misinformation continues to spread online at alarming rates. Some experts fear it could slow progress at COP28."
"A “heat wave scam” is what one social media user called the record-high temperatures reported by European scientists late last month. In a separate post, another account referred to new policies aimed at reducing the carbon emissions of buildings as “climate communism.” As of Friday, the two social media posts have been viewed at least 2 million times—more eyeballs than some of the biggest primetime cable news shows will average in a week.
The internet is awash with misinformation about the climate crisis, even as its effects on the planet couldn’t be more clear. The summer of 2023 is officially the hottest on record, the World Meteorological Organization reported this week. That historic heat has fueled deadly extreme weather across large swaths of the world and pushed global sea temperatures to record highs, disrupting ocean ecosystems and putting countless marine species at risk.
In fact, more than 3.8 billion people—or nearly half the world’s population—experienced extreme heat between June and August that was made more likely because of human-caused climate change, according to a new analysis by Climate Central. This week alone, Britain recorded its hottest day of the year so far and several regions in the United States are once again under heat advisories, as yet another series of brutal heat waves test struggling power grids, damage critical water systems and raise the cost of doing business in industries like farming."