Study Makes Bizarre Claim That Global Warming Could Alter People’s Personalities


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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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A new Columbia Business School study is out with the latest bizarre claim about man-made global warming — it could alter people’s personalities.

“As climate change continues across the world, we may also observe concomitant changes in human personality,” reads the study, published in the journal Nature on Tuesday.

It’s only the latest in a slew of studies on the potential psychological effects of future warming, and it’s not even the most bizarre. For example, recent studies have claimed worry about global warming is making people depressed.

Those worried about man-made warming reported “feelings of loneliness and lethargy,” Reuters reported of a University of Arizona study.

For some environmentalists, lack of hope for the future seems to be real. The New York Times recently reported that some people are deciding to forgo having children because of global warming.

Even more bizarre, a 2015 Harvard School of Public Health study claims, “Carbon dioxide (CO2) has a direct and negative impact on human cognition and decision-making.” Basically, suggesting global warming will make humans dumber.


Columbia researchers claim temperature is a key factor in determining personality traits. People who grew up in more temperate areas, around 72 degrees Fahrenheit, scored better on five broad personality traits than those who grew up where it’s too hot or too cold.

“Clement temperatures encourage individuals to explore the outside environment, where social interactions and new experiences abound,” Jackson Lu, a Columbia doctoral candidate, said in a statement.

Lu contends that future global warming could mean personality changes across the world over time.

“Venturing outdoors and interacting with lots of people make people more agreeable, conscientious, emotionally stable, extraverted, and open to new experiences,” said Lu. “But when the temperature is too hot or too cold, individuals are less likely to go outside to meet up with friends or to try new activities.”

How accurate or reliable is this study? That’s up for you to decide.

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