Jump to navigation
'Scientists don't care about truth anymore'
the climate crisis and rejection of science in Canada's oil country
Haney, Timothy J.
Recent research in the area of science and technology studies focuses on climate change denial, the spread of misinformation, and public distrust in climate scientists; these beliefs are held especially by those dependent on fossil fuel extraction for their livelihoods. Many of the same individuals who deny the scientific consensus on climate change are nevertheless directly impacted by the climate crisis and environmental disasters. In fossil fuel dependent locations, do people continue to deny the scientific consensus on climate change and distrust climate scientists even after themselves experiencing a catastrophic flood? This paper investigates this question through interviews with 40 people affected by the 2013 Southern Alberta Flood, the costliest flood in Canadian history, who also live in the City of Calgary, the economic hub for Canada's tar sands. Results indicate the participants rejected the scientific consensus on climate change, voiced a distrust in the motivations of climate scientists, though hoped they would one day discover the 'truth', and worked discursively to protect the oil industry. The findings reveal the complexity of post-disaster environmental views and trust in science, as well as how fossil fuel dependence shapes these views.
Climate changeScienceDenialCanadaOil and gas