Enviro-Psychologists Confirm Climate Alarmists Are Making Themselves Mentally Sick…”Doomer Depression”

The strategy of scaring people into action on climate change has backfired totally, so writes Kathrin Burger of the German leftist TAZ daily in a piece titled: Horror Scenarios Promote Depression.

Starit jacket - public domain photo

Psychologists say that many who have been listening excessively to climate alarmists are now ready for therapy. Photo: public domain – Marc NL

It turns out the alarmists, with all their climate doom and gloom, have only succeeded in spreading depression among themsleves and those around them.

It’s only normal that people who surround themselves with incurable pessimists also eventually become pessimistic themselves, and eventually get depressed or mentally ill. This is what’s happening within the climate movement in Germany, enviro-psychologists say.

Alarmism as a mental disorder

It can be convincingly argued that mental illness is indeed a chronic problem among many climate alarmists and their followers. Many are paranoid that a trace gas is causing a climate catastrophe. They even blame bad weather on the Co2 trace gas, with some even going so far as to blame earthquakes and war on the man-made CO2 molecules in the air. Seemingly educated scientists are obsessed with a coming climate catastrophe to the point where they even refuse to believe any data showing to the contrary.

And now that many western societies have been exposed to climate pessimism and alarmism for a good 25 years, it’s little wonder we are finding reports confirming that all the climate doom-saying is causing more depression globally, so writes the German leftist online TAZ. The problem with the environmental movement, experts are finding out, is that it is making everybody mentally sick and depressed rather than making them more environmentally aware and responsible. People are becoming complacent when it comes to climate-related action.

“Doomer Depression”

In the TAZ article, author Kathrin Burger admits that all the fear-mongering indeed has been a very poor method of motivating people to change their lives:

Florian Kaiser, environmental psychologist at the University of Magdeburg says: ‘With threatening scenarios you’ll likely not get anyone to change their views.'”

The TAZ writes that all the scare scenarios are in fact leading to a phenomenon dubbed: “Doomer Depression“.

The TAZ, of course, takes the position that the planet is in big trouble, and that this message needs to be communicated in a new way – in a way that makes the message less depressing and more effective at motivating people to change their lives. Nowhere does the TAZ write that the alarmism itself may have its very roots in mental disorder, i.e. the CO2 paranoia and obsession mentioned above.

Here’s an excerpt of what the TAZ claims:

One problem is that climate change is hardly detectable and so people have a psychological distance to it. Apocalyptic scenarios are, however, of little help in overcoming that distance. The overly drastic prognoses that were used especially in the 1980s only amplified the sense of helplessness. ‘Because stability is a fundamental desire of every person, thoughts that have to do with situations of collapse often get suppressed,’ states a strategy paper of the Greens in Saxony.”

The TAZ writes that communicating the message that climate change is real and that humans need to accept drastic lifestyle changes remains a major challenge for the movement. Many people just are not reacting to it.

People are not responding to the message

The real challenge is to find a way to shape people’s perception so that they do embrace the message communicated by the environmental cause. Psychologist Kaiser is quoted by the TAZ as saying:

Pro-social people, those who are inclined to help others, are more accessible for ecological argumentation and are thus more open to dedicating themselves to the environment. However, those who do not count themselves as being among the altruistic are very difficult to reach.”

From the social engineers’ point of view, the problem lies with the human raw material that they have to deal with. The movement would be far easier if only everyone had the right mindset and political view from the start. Consequently many believe that the place to start is to shape the young minds of schoolchildren at an early stage.

School indoctrination has failed

One strategy used by social engineering experts is the indoctrination of children at schools…the farms for growing future environmentalists. Germany for example has attempted in schools for 25 years to indoctrinate its children to become more environmentally aware and responsible. For the results of that experiment, the TAZ quotes Ulrich Gebhardt, child development researcher at the University of Hamburg (emphasis added):

After 25 years of environmental education at schools, the conclusion is sobering: ‘Education for sustainable development‘ has had no effect.'”

And all this time we thought schools were for teaching things like reading, writing, and mathematics. For once in my life I’m glad that schools have, in a way, failed. If anything, this shows that parents are by far the most important force in bringing up children. Good news.

Alarmists Anonymous

So if horror scenarios and indoctrination are failing to motivate people into action and are only causing the side effect of people getting depressed, what strategy is now being pursued in Germany to combat the environmental movement’s side effects, i.e. depression and complacency?

Rather than re-examining the climate data and concluding there really isn’t an imminent catastrophe coming, the alarmists still continue to insist it’s real and are now coming together to produce “positive visions” in group therapy – a sort of Alarmists Anonymous. The TAZ quotes psychologist Gerd Weßling of the Transition Town Bielefeld:

The inner and outer transition depend on each other. In this initiative it’s about meeting on a regular basis, often with psychologists, where the members have the chance to express their desperation and hopelessness.”

For the rest of us who have avoided the doom of gloom of the climate alarmism, my advice is that you continue doing so. Visiting skeptic sites like this one will keep you optimistic about the future and a lot happier.


36 responses to “Enviro-Psychologists Confirm Climate Alarmists Are Making Themselves Mentally Sick…”Doomer Depression””

  1. Psychologists Confirm Climate Alarm Causing Depression | The Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF)

    […] Full story […]

  2. martin D.

    Germany has a history of environmental activism on this scale. It started in the late 19th century with the “Wandervogel Movement”. I suggest reading “How Green Were The Nazis?” It didn’t end well as we all know. The leftist media has successfully transformed the National Socialist Movement that grew out of this Wandervogel Youth Movement into a right wing movement, but anyone with a bare minimum of knowledge and logic knows this to be not true.

    Most people are also unaware that Saddam’s party was officially the “Baath Socialist Party”, that Mugabe in Zimbabwe is also a socialist, as is the party of Assad in Syria (Baa’th Socialist Party) and so on. The media is very effective at leaving these details out.

    For those people who counter by saying, ‘what’s in a name’, all you have to do is counter by asking them to imagine if any of these socialists mentioned above, had had ‘conservative’ mentioned anywhere in their names. We would have all been made aware of this ad nauseum.


    1. John B

      You’re certainly right about that if you are thinking about the BBC lackeys.

  3. John B

    I’ve always thought there was a connection between mental dysfunction and those who believe in climate alarmism. These are a group of people who are easily led/conned, because they are either unable to understand the scientific data which does not support the alarmism, or alternatively are just predisposed to pseudo religious messages and therefore feel the need to belong or to be seen to be doing something.

  4. Loodt Pretorius

    …Visiting skeptic sites like this one will keep you optimistic about the future and a lot happier… And better informed!

  5. MariaTia

    Like a lot of others I grew up with the constant alarmist propoganda. Through time, research and sites such as this, when the penny finally dropped that global warming was not happening, I felt a huge weight drop off my shoulders. I couldn’t believe how duped I’d been by the governments, the alarmist groups, the main media.

    I now view the lot of them as characters from Chicken Licken… help the sky is falling!

  6. Mike Heath

    Have I been blocked?

  7. John Shade

    I wonder how many of the movers and shakers for alarm over co2 will deploy the ‘we were mentally ill’ excuse when this bizarre period of political panic is over? Not many, I suspect. But what other excuse is there? ‘We were greedy’? ‘We were foolish’? ‘We were too hasty’? ‘We just believed what the computers told us’? ‘Everybody was doing it’? ‘We wanted power at any cost’? ‘We just hated humanity in general and industrial civilisation in particular’? ‘New information has just come in to say that there’s more to the climate than co2’?
    I hope the madness gets studied in depth for decades.

  8. Lubos Motl

    A nice article, Pierre, thanks for the report! Alexander Ač (a half-Czech half-Slovak) was just interacting with me. He’s really a rather hardcore pathological example of this disease, to the extent that I feel some compassion quite often.

  9. DirkH

    As usual reading anything from warmists is partly comical partly infuriating. The taz “journalist” assclown points to high suicide rate amongst Oz farmers – not telling the audience that the Rudd/Gillard regime did everything in their power to make farming in Oz impossible.

  10. Observer

    There’s even evidence of this dark side of the climate alarmism:


    Back in 2010, a young Argentinian couple commited suicide over climate chage horror and attempted to kill their baby too. Words of doom really can have dire consequences.

  11. Mike Heath

    I commented earlier, just agreeing with your original statement. I also mentioned how I have started watching RT (Russian TV) instead of BBC and CNN because it has a much fresher, balanced, feel to it. The point being that the effect of watching these bad news outlets also has a depressing affect on us, especially when the bias is so monotonous (see Booker comments earlier this week – I am not alone).

    1. John B

      Interesting you should watch RT. I had never noticed this channel until I went to Turkey on holiday and there was only BBC World or RT. I ended up watching RT every evening because it was so much better than the BBC.

      In the UK I have started watching Al Jazeera UK some time ago, it’s a pretty good news station with much much better coverage than any other UK news station. That surprised me when I first came across it.

  12. LOL!!!! Another Thing Skeptics Were Right About!!! Climate Alarmism Tied To Mental Illness!!! | suyts space

    […] No Tricks Zone has a good read on this and they better translate than my Chrome […]

  13. Chris Frey

    The paragraph I like best was the one about indoctrinating children. I work with children age 3 to 10 as a volunteer in kindergarten, elementary schools and at friends and relatives. My experience of the last couple of years: In the schools in my surrounding there was no indoctrination concerning CO2 whatsoever.
    However, this is different in a gymnasium. The kids there have been told that CO2 is a poison and a pollutant. My neighbour’s daughter heard this, and as I share a deep friendship with my neighbours and she knew that I know something about this, I told her that CO2 is everything but a pollutant. Life on earth would be not possible without CO2.
    Then the scandal: she told this in school – and ran into trouble!
    This leaves me behind with a severe dilemma: Telling the kids what the school tells them is something I can’t do because I know it is a lie. But telling them how it is is no good either because I don’t want children run into trouble because of that. And saying nothing is no solution either because as I said, the children know that I know!
    On my private website (in German!) I have outlined this dilemma in detail:


    Please: Who can help me solving this?

    Chris Frey

    1. DirkH

      “Please: Who can help me solving this?”

      You know, when I was in Gymnasium my biology teacher was angry at the class so he announced he would collect our maps to see whether we had all made notes of the lessons. As usual my map was perfect – were it not for the cartoons I always added. So I re-did it over the weekend, and while I was at it, I added in the section about chromosomes that there are repair enzymes for single strand genetic errors.

      I got a “Wrong” for that; because my teacher had never heard of that.

      Later, when my kid started Gymnasium, the first thing I told him was to always tell the teacher what the teacher expects.

      In other words: It is not only important to know that CO2 is beneficial for plants; it is also important to know that the teacher expects that one says it is poison. And it is important to know which teacher expects what. Applied doublethink; or Zwiedenken; a valuable lesson for adolescents, and nothing to be sneered at, as it gives one insight into power structures.

    2. Mike Heath

      The same question arises in many school issues, and trouble looms if a child appears to be in “danger” from parents who don’t tow the line. For example, issues of sexuality, morality, religion, evolution, Halloween and even Santa Claus cause big problems.

      DirkH has the right advice. It is good to always go with positive information that non-confrontational and helpful. In the case of CO2, the use of it in greenhouses is good, and I am sure you know much more than me on this subject. In the same way, I think it is important for the children to learn about the institutional problem and learn to keep quiet with the knowledge they have got.

      I once had a call from a school because one of my children refused to talk to Santa Claus, and didn’t want to go into the party where he was. It was not that she didn’t like Christmas, or parties, but she knew he was not real (whilst the other kids all still believed it), and she didn’t like the blasting loud disco music in the party. It was her choice, but hard for teachers to handle.

      It is the same with evolution issues. Haekels pictures and Lucy, not to mention the horse sequence are still in the school textbooks even though they are history and discredited along with Piltdown man. It is good for the children to know the facts, but it causes trouble when they know more about the issues than the teachers do, and it is tough for the teachers to handle it. The children can learn a lot about being “critical” without exposing themselves to ridicule for being different.

  14. Catweazle666

    Some people just can’t seem to live without a reason to be depressed.

    Before CAGW it was Mutually Assured Destruction that the ‘Usual Suspects’ lost sleep over.

    And after CAGW – what?

    You can be sure they’ll think of something.

  15. Jeremy Poynton

    Funniest article I’ve read in a long time. Nasty disease, eh? I’d christen it “McKibbenitis”

  16. DirkH

    BTW, the article mentions the initiative “Transition Town Bielefeld” which references “Deep Ecology”… which is rather interesting.

  17. Brian H

    ?? Grade 2 is a lower (earlier) grade here. 8yr-olds, vs 9yr-olds in Grade 3. Your comment will not make any sense in N.A.

    “…Visiting skeptic sites like this one will keep you optimistic about the future and a lot happier…” Yes, with regards to the physical planet. With regard to human mob psychology and gullibility, not so much.

  18. Brian H

    Moderation? Just posted a comment which didn’t appear.

  19. Brian H

    3 attempts to post failed. No odd symbols or vocabulary.

  20. Brian H

    4th Lazarus attempt. No odd symbols or vocabulary.

    ? Grade 2 is a lower (earlier) grade here. 8yr-olds, vs 9yr-olds in Grade 3. Your comment will not make any sense in N.A.

    “…Visiting sceptic sites like this one will keep you optimistic about the future and a lot happier…” Yes, with regards to the physical planet. With regard to human mob psychology and gullibility, not so much.

  21. Brian H

    5th Lazarus attempt. No odd symbols or vocabulary.

    ? Grade 2 is a lower (earlier) grade here. 8yr-olds, vs 9yr-olds in Grade 3. Your comment will not make any sense in N.A.

    “…Visiting sceptic sites like this one will keep you optimistic about the future and a lot happier…” Yes, with regards to the physical planet. With regard to human mob psychology and gullibility, not so much.

  22. Would You Be Surprised That Warmists Are Making Themselves Mentally Sick? » Pirate's Cove

    […] (No Tricks Zone) The strategy of scaring people into action on climate change has backfired totally, so writes Kathrin Burger of the German leftist TAZ daily in a piece titled: Horror Scenarios Promote Depression. […]

  23. Klimatalarmismen är ett hot mot folkhälsan - Stockholmsinitiativet - Klimatupplysningen

    […] förrgår presenterade Gosselin på NoTricksZone en artikel från den tyska tidskriften TAZ som bekräftar Börjes iakttagelse. Människor som […]

  24. Geert de Vries

    I tend to the view that Germany is genetically predisposed to being an order of magnitude more gullible than the rest of the world, which is mighty gullible itself.
    To get a view on the matter, google to websites about witch hunting in the middle ages, and see how people in Germany on average killed an order of magnitude more people they believed to be witches than the surrounding countries did, who were no slouches at killing witches themselves. Google to “Maleficarum” and ” Witch trials in the Early Modern period” at Wikipedia.
    I hate to generalise, but Germans have a problem.
    The amazing thing is they are supposed to be above-average-educated, and should be able to have balanced judgement, but they don’t. Leider nicht.
    Only a month ago I was in Germany and spent an entire evening with a highly intelligent engineer who functions at doctorate level. She came out with clangers about CAGW. She had so much respect for her peers that she believed all the nonsense they dished up, justifying her belief in them by deferring to their high expertise level . It did not occur to her to investigate herself. Typisch Deutsch. Pardon the generalisation.

    1. DirkH


      I don’t know. Maybe the Germans are simply the only ones reporting the actual numbers.
      country, recorded, estimated :
      “France 775 5,000–6,000
      Germany 8,188 17,324–26,000”
      The order-of-magnitude discrepancy is in the recording…

    2. DirkH

      As for the engineer believing in CAGW: Notice that Germans get forced to finance their public broadcaszers with 8 billion EUR a year. I know of no other country that gets so bombarded with propaganda; the obvious reason being the need by the allies to keep Germany weak and under control. We are an occupied country; and an enemy nation as defined by the charta of the UN.

  25. ATheoK

    Intriguing article Pierre, thank you for posting it. I used the WUWT link to come read it.

    I’m not sure I’d agree with alarmism making ‘everybody’ sick; But there are quite a few alarmists who certainly make up for the more durable fear-resistant anti-alarmists science based folks.

    Perhaps, if these psychologically damaged folks are latent ‘kool-aid’ drinkers awaiting the destruction by fire ‘rapture’ event; we need to take efforts to identify these people and engage them in mental health help.

    Maybe we can bring them to the attention of legitimate doctors by echoing whatever alarmist nonsense they’re spouting and then pointing out that the situation is far more dire than they think.

    Then offer them a 1-888-rubr-cel help number.

  26. ATheoK

    Jeremy has it pretty close; only I nominate the illness be termed ‘Manniacal McKibbles depression’.

    Symptoms include a complete loss of:
    scientific method,
    and ability to recognize or tell the truth.

    Their math skills also tend to be severely damaged resulting in random and uncontrolled ‘Involuntary Mathematical Expression Disorder” outbursts affecting their speech, writings and researches.
    —e.g., “…two kilometers or so down in most places there are these incredibly hot rocks, ’cause the interior of the earth is extremely hot, several million degrees…”

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