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Home » Climate change conspiracies are spreading rapidly during UN’s COP26 event

Climate change conspiracies are spreading rapidly during UN’s COP26 event

Climate change conspiracies are spreading rapidly during UN's COP26 event

Conspiracy theories that promote climate-change skepticism and denial spread rapidly across the internet ahead of the United Nation's ongoing COP26 Climate Change summit in Glasgow, Scotland.

Amplified by bots and influencers, a large volume of climate-change denial content spread on social media starting in June, according to researchers at Blackbird.AI. The technology firm's platform uses machine-learning algorithms to scan millions of posts across mainstream social networks — including Twitter, Telegram, fringe sites and others — and, aided by human analysts, identified four major climate-denial trends targeting U.S. and European climate-change policy.

Much of that content used mechanisms that were also effective in amplifying COVID-19 disinformation and vaccine hesitancy, said Blackbird.AI CEO Wasim Khaled.

"We found that climate-change disinformation trends on social networks borrow from themes that were effective during the coronavirus crisis," he told CBS MoneyWatch. "The actors appear to direct anger that's already simmering in U.S. politics toward climate-change denial. Our platform indicates this is a coordinated campaign that appears to be a series of overlapping independent campaigns, happening at scale."

The following are some of the unfounded or otherwise dubious ideas related to climate change that have circulated online ahead of the UN's COP26 event.

Conspiracy: Climate change lockdowns are coming

Unknown actors are targeting audiences that congregate on social platforms to protest COVID-19 lockdowns with conspiracies that world governments will introduce "climate change lockdowns" and "herald a new age of social control and political tyranny in the name of environmental protection," according to Blackbird.AI.

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