The greenhouse metaphor and the footprint metaphor: climate change risk assessment and risk management seen through the lens of two prominent metaphors

Nerlich, Brigitte and Hellsten, Iina (2014) The greenhouse metaphor and the footprint metaphor: climate change risk assessment and risk management seen through the lens of two prominent metaphors. TATuP - Zeitschrift des ITAS zur Technikfolgenabschätzung, 23 (2). pp. 27-33. ISSN 1619-7623

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Abstract

This article charts the emergence and framing of anthropogenic climate change as risk through the lens of two metaphors: greenhouse effect and carbon footprint. We argue that the greenhouse effect metaphor provided the scientific basis for framing climate change as a risk, indeed it can be seen as part of risk assessment. The carbon footprint metaphor, in turn, can be seen as belonging to the domain of risk management, as through this and other related metaphors, such as carbon offsetting, carbon budgets and the like, policy makers try to act upon the scientific risk assessment delivered by the greenhouse metaphor and encourage human behaviour change that reduces the risks of unmanaged climate change. We investigate how these key metaphors spread both in English news articles and in natural and social science articles and how they may shape current discourses and actions on climate change.

Item Type: Article
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham UK Campus > Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Sociology and Social Policy
Depositing User: Nerlich, Professor Brigitte
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2014 15:09
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2016 13:18
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/3373

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