1st Edition

Climate Change Denial and Public Relations Strategic communication and interest groups in climate inaction

Edited By Núria Almiron, Jordi Xifra Copyright 2020
    268 Pages
    by Routledge

    268 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This is the first book on climate change denial and lobbying that combines the ideology of denial and the role of anthropocentrism in the study of interest groups and communication strategy.

    Climate Change Denial and Public Relations: Strategic Communication and Interest Groups in Climate Inaction is a critical approach to climate change denial from a strategic communication perspective. The book aims to provide an in-depth analysis of how strategic communication by interest groups is contributing to climate change inaction. It does this from a multidisciplinary perspective that expands the usual approach of climate change denialism and introduces a critical reflection on the roots of the problem, including the ethics of the denialist ideology and the rhetoric and role of climate change advocacy. Topics addressed include the power of persuasive narratives and discourses constructed to support climate inaction by lobbies and think tanks, the dominant human supremacist view and the patriarchal roots of denialists and advocates of climate change alike, the knowledge coalitions of the climate think tank networks, the denial strategies related to climate change of the nuclear, oil, and agrifood lobbies, the role of public relations firms, the anthropocentric roots of public relations, taboo topics such as human overpopulation and meat-eating, and the technological myth.

    This unique volume is recommended reading for students and scholars of communication and public relations.

    List of Illustrations

    About the Editors

    Notes on Contributors


    PART I: Ethics and anthropocentrism in climate change denial and public relations 

    1. Rethinking the Ethical Challenge in Climate Change Lobbying: A Discussion of Ideological Denial

    2. The Anthropocentric Roots of Public Relations: A (Pre)historical Approach and Ontological Consideration. 

    3. An Ecofeminist Analysis of Worldviews and Climate Change Denial. 

    4. Why Environmentalism Cannot Beat Denialism. An Antispeciesist Approach to the Ethics of Climate Change. 

    5. The Elephant in the Room: The Role of Interest Groups in Creating and Sustaining the Population Taboo

    PART II: Theorizing the Storyline of Climate Change Denial 

    6. Talking about Climate Change: The Power of Narratives. 

    7. Climate Change Countermovement Organizations and Media Attention in the United States. 

    8. Think Tank Networks and the Knowledge-Interest Nexus: The Case of Climate Change. 

    PART III: Lobbying for Denial in climate change 

    9. The Climate Smokescreen: The Public Relations Consultancies Working to Obstruct Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions in Europe—A Critical Approach. 

    10. "Cowgate": Meat Eating and Climate Change Denial. 

    11. "This Nagging Worry About the Carbon Dioxide Issue": Nuclear Denial and the Nuclear Renaissance Campaign.

    PART IV: Advocating against Climate Change Denial

    12. Fighting Climate Change Denial in the United States.

    13. A Wicked Systems Approach to Climate Change Advocacy.



    Núria Almiron is an Associate Professor at Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona. She studies the ethics and political economy of communication, interest groups and strategic communication, critical animal studies and environment. Her work has appeared in journals such as Journalism Studies, Environmental Communication, and the European Journal of Communication.

    Jordi Xifra is a Professor at Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona. He studies public relations from history, philosophy, and filmic perspectives. His work has appeared in journals such as Public Relations Review, Journal of Public Relations Research, and American Behavioral Scientist. He is founder of Public Relations Inquiry.