Behavior Energy and Climate Conference

The 2014 Behavior, Energy & Climate Change (BECC) Conference took place Dec. 7-10 in Washington, D.C.

News from BECC

Ernie Moniz

Ernest Moniz: Research on behavior essential to meeting climate and energy goals, despite funding difficulties 

When new energy technologies are developed, how do you get people to use them? What market conditions are necessary for their adoption? How do you motivate consumers to use energy more efficiently? These are a few of the critical questions that must be answered by social science research if the United States is to meet its goals on reducing emissions of greenhouse gases, said U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz.

“I have never seen a credible solution to our climate change challenge without a major demand-side contribution,” said Moniz. “The social sciences can and must help us in meeting these climate and energy challenges.” More



George Loewenstein

George Loewenstein: Evolution of human emotions inhibits response to climate change

Getting people to act in ways that could lessen climate change faces an uphill battle not only due to traditional economics, but also to behavioral economics, said Carnegie Mellon's George Loewenstein, a founder of the latter field. In his keynote talk at BECC, Loewenstein gave some reasons for optimism, but he focused on the challenges that are critical to the work of the scholars, entrepreneurs and policymakers trying to change people’s actions relevant to global warming.

"Except for partisanship, climate change hasn’t provoked emotions in line with the severity of the threat," said Loewenstein, the conference’s opening keynote speaker. "The challenge of climate change is just poorly met through our evolved emotional systems in a number of ways." More



2014 BECC Conference


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