Climate Change and Globalization

How do climate activists and politicians convince humanity of the urgent need to act against global warming?

Pre-University Paper, 2020

18 Pages, Grade: 2,0



Table of Contents

1 Introduction
1.1 Why is the issue of climate change so present ?

2 Definitions
2.1 Global Warming
2.2 Climate Change

3 Indicators of climate change
3.1 Rising global average temperature
3.2 Glacier/ice melting
3.3 Rising sea level
3.4 Species diversity/extinction of animal species

4 speech analysis Greta Thunberg

5 Excerpt speech analysis Barack Obama:

6 Extract speech analysis Donald Trump:

7 comparison of both presidents:

8 „motor“ and „machine“ symbol

9 Conclusion

10 Bibliography

1 Introduction

1.1 Why is the issue of climate change so present?

The topic of climate change and globalization is so present at the moment because people are already feeling the effects of global warming in many parts of the world and the poorest people are particularly hardest concerned by these effects.1 Climate change is already affecting millions of people and is destroying their livelihoods. Global warming is heating up our planet and with climate change, extreme weather events such as floods and droughts will become more frequent and more severe and this is scaring our affluent generation, because we are worried about our future.2 Of course, every single person can begin to make their small contribution, but the issue of climate change seems so threatening because there seems to be no solution to stop the development. Climate change has many consequences for the environment, the economy and society. The topic is just as topical, because the politics are not able, and the economy is not sufficiently willing to act or counteract accordingly and that’s why everybody is afraid of climate change, but few are prepared to limit their personal lifestyle or habits. At the moment we are on the way to a four-degree world with drastic consequences for the next generations. If a so-called tipping point of the climate is exceeded, there is a risk that the icecaps will melt completely over the millennia, even if people then no longer emit greenhouse gases2, it is therefore important to act quickly. For the Paris Climate Agreement to finally be implemented ambitiously by governments, we need an informed and active public. Thanks to Greta Thunberg's strong public appearances and the response to her "wake-up call", the issue of climate change and its consequences has become much more important and has become much more present in the public eye.

2 Definitions

2.1 Global Warming

"global" is English and is derived from the Latin "globe" and means worldwide. In connection with warming, the term stands for the increase in the average global temperature and the resulting climate change.3

What happens when the Earth gets warmer and warmer?

What exactly awaits us, no one knows for sure but Climate researchers make the following predictions: increase in extreme weather events such as heat waves, droughts (forest fires as a result of drought), hurricanes, flood disasters in summer are becoming more frequent, ice melting.4 In the Arctic, glaciers are disappearing, causing sea levels to riserice

2.2 Climate Change

A change in climate has been observed on earth for several years. Again, and again cold and warm periods alternated over the years. These changes had natural causes.

Nowadays, when we talk about climate change, we mean the changes caused by humans. Summarized briefly, this means that mankind is to blame for the fact that it is getting warmer and warmer on earth because he consumes energy in almost everything he does. Factories have machines rattling, cars run on engines, computers and mobile phones need electricity.3 This energy is usually generated by combustion, for example of coal, oil or gas.3 Among other things, this produces CO2. The forest areas in which the CO2 could be stored are shrinking. In addition, people all over the world are eating more and more meat and that also heats up the earth, this is because farm animals such as cattle and pigs produce vast quantities of methane, which is also a greenhouse gas

3 Indicators of climate change

3.1 Rising global average temperature

For about two million years, the Earth's CO2 emissions have been stable but since the industrialization, about 200 years ago, humans stopped to do drive machines by muscle power, wind or water and started by combustion. Since that point of time, CO2 emissions have increased and accordingly the temperature of the Earth’s surface as well by an average of 0.8 degrees Celsius.5

3.2 Glacier/ice melting

Melting ice means that the thickness or length of the ice masses and glaciers decreases annually due to the increased air and water temperatures.

Since the beginning of industrialization, the process of ice melting has been increasing in speed.6

3.3 Rising sea level

Global sea-level rise has accelerated and this is partly because glaciers and ice sheets are melting faster and faster. How the rise will develop in the future depends very much on how many greenhouse gases humanity will still emit.

Overall, global sea level has already risen by about 15 cm in the 20th century.7 All over the world, people live in close contact with the ocean, the large cities by the sea are growing and coastal areas are being used intensively, which is why the ever faster rising sea levels are a threatening consequence of climate change.6

3.4 Species diversity/extinction of animal species

If the Earth warms by more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, catastrophic weather events, climate change and even the collapse of our ecosystems are imminent. Global species extinction is therefore part of this and global warming is already destroying habitats. Since 2016, large parts of the Great Barrier Reef have been bleaching out, glaciers are melting, and pastures are drying up.8 If the climate warms by two degrees, to 4.3 degrees Celsius, five percent of all animal species would be endangered.8

Up to half of all animal species in the world's natural regions would become extinct as a result of climate change if we do not change the emission of greenhouse gases.

In the coming decades, we can expect further increases in temperatures, greater drought in some regions and heavier rainfall in many regions. The adaptive capacity of individual species could be increasingly overstretched9 and the consequences of climate change on biodiversity are great.

All these events in today's world have moved me to take a closer look at the topic of climate change and globalization in the following skilled work. In doing so, I would like to focus on the examination of speech excerpts of today's active climate activists and politicians in order to find out whether and how they convey the effects on human and animal life and the need for action associated with them impressively enough.

In the following, will be examined to what extent climate activists reach humanity through their speeches and how they manage to wake up people sufficiently enough and call for action. Therefore, the speeches of different political influences are compared and analyzed with regard to their persuasion strategies, facts, approaches to solutions, their appearance and rhetorical means.

4 speech analysis Greta Thunberg

Throughout Europe, young people are awakening, becoming politically active, and their future is at stake, with Greta Thunberg as their current role model.

Greta Thunberg is a 17-year-old Swedish climate activist who is strongly committed to climate policy and has gained worldwide attention through her well-known speeches on climate change. She is a girl “who skipped school and inspired an international movement to fight climate change (and) (s)he has become a leading voice, inspiring millions to join protests around the world”10. Their wake-up call is well known and is called the climate crisis. "Greta Thunberg has recently become the key symbol of, and inspiration for, a new generation of climate activists”.11 Experts agree that one of the reasons Greta's speeches evoke so many reactions around the world is because, compared to many politicians, they are very clearly formulated and her speeches are short.12 With an emotional speech and one of Greta Thunberg's most famous quotes "our house is on fire "13 Greta Thunberg addressed the politicians at the World Economic Forum in Davos on 25 January 2019 and received a lot of attention. In Davos she called for immediate action against climate change and she criticized the inaction of politicians in the face of the climate crisis and called for the Paris climate protection agreement to finally implement the agreed targets. "In her public speeches, the Swedish teenager highlights important details that are missing from the official guidelines and documents. She stresses that the parties to the Paris Accord are not determined to adopt and implement concrete measures to change people's behaviour and also to limit and prevent the effects of the climate crisis.”12


1 cf. Jayson Maclean; June 11, 2016; “Globalization is worsening the effects of climate change” under: (16.02.2020)

2 cf. Geolino, "Klimawandel: Wie der Mensch die Erde verändert" under: (12.02.2020)

3 cf. Geolino, "Klimawandel: Wie der Mensch die Erde verändert" under: (12.02.2020)

4 cf. Jayson Maclean; June 11, 2016; “Globalization is worsening the effects of climate change” under: (16.02.2020)

5 cf. Geolino, "Klimawandel: Wie der Mensch die Erde verändert" under: (12.02.2020)

6 cf. Climate Service Center Germany, Bildungsserver wiki Klimawandel “Arktisches Meereis” under: (13.02.2020)

7 cf. Deutsches Klima Konsortium; "Zukunft der Meeresspiegel” under: (13.02.2020)

8 Zeit online; "saving the earth" under: (13.02.2020)

9 cf. Jayson Maclean; June 11, 2016; “Globalization is worsening the effects of climate change” under: (16.02.2020)

10 “Trump Davos speech: ‘This is not a time for pessimism’”; 21 January 2020; BBC News under: (25.02.2020)

11Our house is on fire “ under:

12 “A Rhetorical Analysis of Greta Thunberg’s Public Speeches on Climate Change” Elena-Maria Vavilov; 2019; Jönköping University under: (24.02.2020)

13 “’Our house is on fire.’ 16 year-old Greta Thunberg wants action” ; James Workman; 25 January 2019; World Economic Forum under: (24.02.2020)

Excerpt out of 18 pages


Climate Change and Globalization
How do climate activists and politicians convince humanity of the urgent need to act against global warming?
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
Climate Change, Globalisation, Climate Change and Globalisation, issue of Climate Change, Global, Warming, Rising global average temperature, Glacier melting, Rising sea level, Species diversity, Extinction of animal Species, Greta Thunberg, Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Symbol "motor" and "machine", Klimawandel, Globalisierung, Probleme des Klimawandels, Erde, Steigende Erdtemperatur, Glätscher schmelzen
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Anonymous, 2020, Climate Change and Globalization, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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