White House science advisor John Holdren says how we talk to children about climate change is important.
"The key... is to be clear about the basics of climate change," he said at a forum on climate education at WGBH in November. "Namely, what climate change is, and why it matters. "The second thing in talking to kids is, don't just paralyze them with all the bad news. End with solutions, with opportunities."
The forum drew an audience of teachers, scientists, and others who want children to have the tools they need to shape the future of the planet.
Holdren responded to a question from a teacher, who asked what she should say to a child who announces that his father, "doesn't believe in climate change."
"You tell the 10-year-old that he has an opportunity to educate daddy about climate change," he said. "Because the kid will quickly know more about it than the contrarian parent."
Holdren continued, "The fact is, it's science with a nearly 200 year history of observations, measurements, and analysis. It is the most peer-reviewed body of science that we've ever had."