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Public Opinion Snapshot: The Death Of Public Support For Global Warming Action Is Greatly Exaggerated

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"Public Opinion Snapshot: The Death Of Public Support For Global Warming Action Is Greatly Exaggerated"

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public thinks we should take action on global warming

by Ruy Teixeira

President Barack Obama recently observed that tackling climate change remains vitally important despite difficulties moving legislation forward. Conservatives, of course, are trying their utmost to remove the issue permanently from political discussion, claiming that the public is tired of the debate and no longer has an appetite for combating global warming.

But a just-released poll from the Yale and George Mason climate change communication programs reveals the lie in this claim. 63 percent of respondents said the United States should move forward to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, regardless of what other countries do, compared to 3 percent who said we should await action by industrialized countries, 8 percent who said we should wait for both industrialized and developing countries to move, and 5 percent who said we shouldn’t bother reducing emissions.

In the same poll, the public supported — by a margin of 63 percent to 37 percent — requiring electric utilities to produce at least 20 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources, even if that would cost the average household an extra $100 per year.

public thinks utilities should use more renewable energy

The poll also found that 65 percent of Americans support an international treaty to require a 90 percent cut in U.S. carbon dioxide emissions by 2050.

public supports an international treaty to reduce emissions

Clearly, reports of the death of public support for action on global warming are overblown. Contrary to conservative assertions, that support is alive and kicking.

Ruy Teixeira is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. This is a CAP cross-post.

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3 Responses to Public Opinion Snapshot: The Death Of Public Support For Global Warming Action Is Greatly Exaggerated

  1. As Abe said, “Your can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”

    • Calamity Jean says:

      And a summer heat wave or two will likely increase the support for reducing GHG emissions.

  2. Andy says:

    Genuine question (not snarky);

    What was the demographic of the people surveyed? How was the data collected?