Attention, sentiments and emotions towards emerging climate technologies on Twitter

Müller-Hansen, F., Repke, T., Baum, C.M., Brutschin, E. ORCID:, Callaghan, M.W., Debnath, R., Lamb, W.F., Low, S., et al. (2023). Attention, sentiments and emotions towards emerging climate technologies on Twitter. Global Environmental Change 83 e102765. 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2023.102765.

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Project: GeoEngineering and NegatIve Emissions pathways in Europe (GENIE, H2020 951542)


Public perception of emerging climate technologies, such as greenhouse gas removal (GGR) and solar radiation management (SRM), will strongly influence their future development and deployment. Studying perceptions of these technologies with traditional survey methods is challenging, because they are largely unknown to the public. Social media data provides a complementary line of evidence by allowing for retrospective analysis of how individuals share their unsolicited opinions. Our large-scale, comparative study of 1.5 million tweets covers 16 GGR and SRM technologies and uses state-of-the-art deep learning models to show how attention, and expressions of sentiment and emotion developed between 2006 and 2021. We find that in recent years, attention has shifted from general geoengineering themes to specific GGR methods. On the other hand, there is little attention to specific SRM technologies and they often coincide with conspiracy narratives. Sentiments and emotions in GGR tweets tend to be more positive, particularly for methods perceived to be natural, but are more negative when framed in the geoengineering context.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Public perception, Geoengineering, Solar radiation management, Greenhouse gas removal, Social media, Sentiment analysis
Research Programs: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions (TISS)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2024 08:38
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2024 08:38

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