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Ongoing

The Dangers of Disinformation

Understanding the challenges of disinformation and polarization to better protect ourselves

What's at stake?

We live in an era of destabilization, where it is becoming increasingly difficult to discern truth from lies, where differences in perspectives quickly turn into polarizing debates, and where convictions of all kinds sometimes take precedence over reason, or even science.

Disinformation-Canada's biggest risk

According to Policy Horizons Canada, this is the single greatest threat facing the world. Within three years, people may not be able to tell what is true and what is not. 🤯

We are currently experiencing troubling issues of misinformation, disinformation and polarization.

With all the benefits that the digital technologies and innovations seen in recent decades have brought us – internet access at our fingertips, ultra-powerful search engines, omnipresent social networks and artificial intelligence taking on a greater role every day – there have also come challenges and threats that have proven highly problematic. For more and more people, what we believe and confidence in the truth have become less and less certain. We are being influenced by powerful, profit-driven interests, all too often to the detriment of society and the planet.

What is climate disinformation?

Discover

Climate disinformation

Why it’s important to address it

50%

During the 2022 provincial election, nearly half of Quebecers surveyed found it difficult to distinguish between disinformation and facts, and were unsure whether or not they had been exposed to disinformation.

Source: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5ea874746663b45e14a384a4/t/641232839282647078a6b59e/1678914185387/Rapport+final_PDEQ_2023.pdf

Our work

While climate disinformation is not a new concept, the digital context that is currently fueling it poses a major threat to the socio-ecological transition Équiterre has been working on for over 30 years.

We've taken on the challenge of helping to understand the phenomena of disinformation and polarization, so that Quebecers can better protect themselves against these influential forces, and help others do the same.

Politics has become a highly polarized arena. From the beginning, Équiterre has worked to promote ambitious and effective climate policies. Therefore, we are striving to protect the achievements of the environmental movement from the vagaries of polarization by helping the public to better discern what is true from what is false, for example with regards to the carbon tax.

We are working with the UNESCO-PREV Chair to identify radicalization factors and tools to protect against disinformation, and with experts to develop awareness-raising events. This is how Équiterre is shedding light on these issues.

View our webinar

Our goals

  1. Help people understand disinformation, the forces that drive it, and how to protect themselves from it.

  2. Counter climate disinformation to protect climate policies that promote or enable the socio-environmental transition.

Learn how to find your way around

Consult the guide on disinformation

Project history

2024

May

The greatest risk for Canada

According to Policy Horizons Canada, disinformation is the single greatest threat facing the world. Within the next three years, people may be unable to distinguish between what is true and what is not.

2023

December

Disinformation takes centre stage at COP28

Équiterre participates in the conference to address climate disinformation, notably through a panel organized in conjunction with the UNESCO-PREV Chair.

View the panel discussion here (in French)

November

UN sounds the alarm

The United Nations identifies disinformation and misinformation as "major obstacles to progress in tackling the climate crisis."

Our team