70% of Americans are experiencing climate change anxiety and depression, survey claims

A Yale University study suggests 70 percent of Americans experience climate change anxiety and depression. 

The study, titled, “Climate Change in the American Mind,” is conducted annually to gauge the American public perception of environmental issues. “Global Warming’s Six Americas” are the types of citizens identified in the study.

The researchers explain, “Understanding these Six Americas—from the ‘Alarmed’ (Americans who are very worried about global warming and are taking action) to the ‘Dismissive’ (those who think global warming is non-existent, not a threat, or an outright hoax)—has been critical to the efforts of NGOs, advocates, government organizations, and others seeking to better communicate the threat of global warming to their constituencies.”

Psychologist Noah Oderberg suggests concerned Americans are developing “pre-PTSD” because of fears regarding the future of the planet. Furthermore, Oderberg said “50% said they were planning to have fewer children and one of the reasons stated was their fear around climate change. It’s very new and the field of psychology is not prepared for it.”

The Climate Psychology Alliance agrees with the study’s sentiment and suggests the next casualty of climate change may be mental health. The organization trains and employs Climate Therapists.

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