Why Most People Don’t Care About Climate Change

What that means, in effect, is that climate policy asks the present to sacrifice for the future. Human beings tend not to be very good at that kind of planning, even when their own future selves stand to benefit — a study this year found that just 10% of Americans have saved enough in a 401(k) or individual retirement account to put themselves on a track to retire.
When it comes to climate change, the worst effects will be felt years after many people today are long gone.
From a self-centered perspective, that makes strict climate policy like saving for a retirement you know you’ll never live to see.
So it shouldn’t be surprising that a new study in Nature Climate Change confirms the fact that the kind of long-term cooperation demanded by effective climate policy is going to be even more challenging than we thought.