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Big Brother and Climate Propaganda

Big Brother and Climate Propaganda

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Published by reanthal
Psychological warfare
Psychological warfare

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Published by: reanthal on Mar 12, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Big "Climate" Brother 
Posted by Richard Saturday, March 06, 2010climate change One of the more sinister aspects of the "climate change" miasma is the insistence of campaignersand governments that saving the planet requires personal sacrifice and significant changes inpersonal lifestyles. However, while we may be dimly aware of government exhortations alongthose lines, few people realise quite how much of our money is being spent on trying to make uschange our ways.A significant amount of that money is spent by one government department, DEFRA, on"behavioural research", and a record of its recent expenditure provides a chilling testament to theOrwellian world of climate advocacy, where every aspect of our lives is coming under officialscrutiny.The record, which starts in 2005, has the University of Surreydoing a projectcalled "ChoiceMatters", exploring how to make sustainability "an automatic and primary part of producer andconsumer choice, rather than a self-satisfying added extra." This cost a relatively modest£21,775.For £63,017 meanwhile, the University of Westminstercarried outan analysis of existingresearch relating to "pro-environmental behavioural change", aiming to contribute towards abetter practical understanding of how DEFRA could influence behaviours.Cranfield University, on the other hand, took on: "Sustainable development as a "collectivechoice" problem: theoretical and practical implications". Theaim if this researchwas to explorethoroughly the potential of a highly promising and unique body of research, known as"collective-action theory", for achieving DEFRA's goal of finding new ways of motivatingpeople to produce and consume in a sustainable manner. This cost a mere £23,333.
Exeter University wasgiven the task of applying theories of behavioural change, usinginnovative techniques within the context of specific lifestyle groups. It employed a brandmarketing approach to demonstrate how a model of environmental behaviour could be used todevelop policies for change. The work cost us £21,000.Other work went to the London-based "green" consultancy,Brook Lyndhurst, which wasasked about"nudging the S-Curve". This shows an initial period of slow change; a period of acceleration, and rapid change; and a period in which change slows down as some sort of limit togrowth is approached. This project sought better to understand the S-curve in order to promotepro-environmental behaviour change. For us, there was no change from £21,150.Then, another consultancy, the National Centre for Business and Sustainability,got to do "Innovative approaches to influencing the behaviour of small businesses." This was to find outhow existing mechanisms and approaches could be used innovatively" to influence the behaviourof small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a pro-sustainable development policy context."For that, we paid £22,225.This earlier period also saw DEFRA investing ina behavioural surveycommissioned from theBritish Market Research Bureau. At a cost of £458,440, this sought to establish then currentpublic attitudes, knowledge and behaviour in relation to the environment, in order to provide abaseline for further studies.At the same time, the department was exploring a range of issues and public attitudes,wondering, for instance, whether invoking the concept of "social justice" might help to lock inthe government's view of environmental policy. To that effect, in 2006 itcommissionedareport  from National Economic Research Associates at a cost of £77,361.More than a little of the work carried overtly Orwellian overtones, such as the project carried outby thePolicy Studies Instituteentitled: "Pro-Environmental Behaviour: Risk, Innovation andReward." This sought to identify "potential directions and options for research exploringinnovation, demonstration and learning on ways to increase consumer take-up of sustainableconsumption behaviours." The cost was £25,169.Not a little money was spent trying to assess the effects of DEFRA's own initiatives. Thus wefind the departmentBrook Lyndhurst£82,980 in 2008 to tell it whether its online "CO2calculator" is actually having any effect.Half a million people had accessed the site but, it noted, "relatively little is known about whythese individuals are logging on, how they are understanding and using the calculator, what theymake of the results and whether or not this has any long term effect on their behaviours, whetherpositivie (sic) or negative."The department also spent £109,710 asking Brook Lyndhurstto report on"Public Understandingof links between climate change and energy and food consumption in the home".
It then commissioned a series of reports, all on the theme of "sustainability". Nottingham Trent University got £59,971for examiningthe "PublicUnderstanding of sustainable clothing", with a view to providing indications of how changesmight successfully be made in our "clothing culture". Looking at thefinished report, few wouldappreciate just how much it had cost.A firm called Synovatethen got paid£64,277 for a report on, "Public understanding of sustainable water". Ipsos-Mori was paid to look at "sustainable investment",getting paid£54,150for the work. And then the Policy Studies Institutegot paid£12,220 to write a synthesis report,pulling together the disparate work.Another venture was to explore "innovative approaches to achieving sustainable consumption",payingBrook Lyndhurst£59,770 to carry out some research. AEA Technology, meanwhile,was paid£77,971 to look at, "Household and economy wide impacts of changing environmentalbehaviours."Surrey Universitywas set onto investigate motivations for change, using six identified pro-environmental behaviours, for which it was paid £110,000, while Brook Lyndhurstwas hiredtogauge the role of influential individuals in social networks, at a cost of £77,800.AD Research and Analysis was asked to do some methodology development, for segmentation,getting paid£19,950 for its trouble, thenbeing rewardedwith a £89,275 project on, "Unlocking habits to enable pro-environmental behaviours." Later, it got another £12,000 formoredevelopment work .The Policy Studies Institute was given £115,323to find outwhat "further" short term actions thepublic thought the Government should take to mitigate climate change while the EPPI-Centrewas paid£93,304 to research ways of encouraging "more pro-environmental behaviour amongstSMEs".

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