Twitter may be the ultimate land of hot takes, cancel culture, and viral memes. But it's also fertile ground for anyone who wants a crash course or ongoing education in a wide number of topics — as long as you know who to follow for what. And if you're concerned by the ongoing threat of climate change, it might be time to
follow climate scientists and experts on Twitter, so that you're consistently in the know.
Though you might already know the basic facts around climate change, the issue is so wide-ranging that it's still entirely possible you aren't aware of different aspects or
contributing factors of the phenomenon. Climate change, after all, is not just an issue of weather or climate. It is intertwined with issues related to economic, racial, and socioeconomic justice, among others. That's why it's so important to follow experts who specialize in different areas related to climate change. If you only follow meteorologists, or only follow experts focused on climate policy, then you're not getting the full picture of what's going on.
From climate justice essayists to coral reef researchers, this list offers a wide range of climate scientists and experts to give you all the information you need to be a fully informed citizen on the issue of climate change.
Dr. Jonathan Foley is a global environmental scientist, writer, and public speaker. He's also the Executive Director of Project Drawdown, a research organization that "reviews, analyses, and identifies the most viable global climate solutions, and shares these findings with the world," per its site. Dr. Katharine Wilkinson is the Vice President of Communication and Engagement at Project Drawdown. She is also an author, public speaker, strategist, and educator on climate science. You can see her TED Talk on how the empowerment of women and girls can combat climate change above. Mary Heglar is a climate justice essayist, as well as the Director of Publications at Natural Resources Defense Council. You can read an essay she wrote about why love is the greatest motivator to take on climate change here. Daniel Kammen is a former Science Envoy for the State Department; you can see his 2017 resignation letter addressed to Donald Trump in the tweet above. He is now a Distinguished Professor of Energy at the University of California, Berkeley. Ben Noll is a meteorologist at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research in New Zealand. He provides both high level climate information and lower level weather forecasts in the Hudson Valley of New Zealand on his Twitter feed. Dr. Genevieve Guenther is an author and the founder of End Climate Silence, a volunteer organization "dedicated to helping the media link stories about climate-change impacts to climate change itself," per the site. She's also a professor at the New School in the Tishman Environment and Design Center. Anna Jane Joyner is a climate activist and the co-host of a climate change-focused podcast called No Place Like Home. The podcast, which is sponsored by the Sierra Club, releases a new episode approximately once a month. Terry Hughes is a professor, researcher, and the Director of ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies. Hughes is cited in a number of environmental articles on Google Scholar, and often tweets about the effects of climate change on coral reef systems in particular. Katharine Hayhoe is a climate scientist, public speaker, and educator on the impact and solutions to climate change. She's also a professor in the Department of Political Science at Texas Tech University; she holds multiple positions at Texas Tech, per her site. Dr. Ayana Johnson is a marine biologist, policy expert, conservation strategist, and the founder and CEO of Ocean Collective, a consulting firm for "conservation solutions grounded in social justice," per her site. She's also the founder of Urban Ocean Lab, a think tank that focuses on "coastal cities." Dr. Mark Brandon is a professor of polar oceanography and holds a PhD in polar oceanography. Brandon's research has been used for video and broadcasting broadcasts including BBC Earth, per his site. Dr. Kate Marvel is a climate scientist; she also describes herself as a "writer, storyteller, and human," per her site. Marvel notably gave a 2017 TED Talk about the role clouds can play in climate change. Bill Nye is a science educator and mechanical engineer, who first became famous in the field of science when he hosted the television series Bill Nye the Science Guy. Nye has written several books, and now travels the world educating people and children about climate change, among other scientific phenomena. Rachael Licker is a senior climate scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists. She holds a Ph.D. in Environment and Resources, and frequently tweets about her role in communicating climate change-related issues to policymakers in D.C. Patricia Espinosa is the executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Espinosa frequently tweets about the efforts being made by the U.N. to address the climate change crisis. Heather McTeer Toney is the National Field Director for Moms Clean Air Force, and a former Regional Administrator for the EPA. She also frequently appears on national news networks like CNN, MSNBC, and NBC. You can watch a recent MSNBC segment with Toney here. Jamie Margolin is the founder of This Is Zero Hour, an "intersectional movement of youth activisits fighting for a livable planet for all," per the movement's Twitter bio. Margolin notable gave a TED talk about how climate change is "the grand culmination of all our societal injustices," as she notes in her pinned tweet. You can watch the talk above. Rhiana Gunn-Wright is a policy lead for the Green New Deal. To learn about how she's approached this position and monumental policy task, you can listen to her interview on the Ezra Klein Show.
Following all of these climate experts and scientists on Twitter is a great (and very easy) step to take towards being more actively involved in the fight against climate change. Of course, there are many other steps you can take if you want to do more.
If you want to get out there and do something in the world with other people, you can participate in the
Global Climate Strikes, which are taking place the week of Sept. 20. You can also prioritize voting for politicians who display an active and thorough intention to address issues related to climate change; this is particularly relevant for the 2020 presidential election. You can also encourage your friends to follow the people on this list, too. This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.