Excerpt: In the United States, more people believe that houses can be haunted by the dead than believe that the living can cause climate change. Is this simply a scary Halloween tale or our frightening future?
The latest Pew poll on global warming shows a large drop in the percentage of Americans who say there is solid evidence that global temperatures are rising, from 71% down to only 57% in the last 18 months. And global warming due to human activity? The overall numbers have declined from 47% to 36%. To put this in perspective, a Gallup poll found that 37% of Americans believe that houses can be haunted. This contrast is particularly dramatic among conservatives: Only 18% of republicans believe that there is evidence of global warming caused by human activity, while 28% of conservatives believe in haunted houses. More details here.
Other recent polling data:
Pew Poll: Americans’ belief in global warming cools — ‘Sharp decline over past year’ — Only 36% say warming man-made, down from 47% last year – Oct. 22, 2009 – WSJ – Excerpt: A new poll out today on Americans’ attitudes about climate change presents sobering findings for those that favor aggressive action to curb U.S. emissions of greenhouse gases. The survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds a sharp decline over the past year in the percentage of Americans who see solid evidence that global temperatures are rising. According to the survey, conducted between Sept. 30 and Oct. 4 among 1,500 adults reached on cell phones and landlines, fewer respondents also see global warming as a very serious problem; 35% say that today, down from 44% in April 2008. The survey also points to a decline in the proportion of Americans who say global temperatures are rising as a result of human activity. Just 36% say that currently, down from 47% last year.
Gallup survey found global warming ranked dead last in the U.S. among ENVIRONMENTAL issues – 8th out of 8 Env. Issues – March 2009 – Excerpt: (Air and water pollution, toxic waste, animal and plant extinction and loss of tropical rainforests, all ranked as greater concerns than global warming.) “Since more Americans express little to no worry about global warming than say this about extinction, global warming is clearly the environmental issue of least concern to them. In fact, global warming is the only issue for which more Americans say they have little to no concern than say they have a great deal of concern.”
Gallup Poll Editor: Gore has ‘Failed’ — ‘The public is just not that concerned’ about global warming – May 5, 2009 – Excerpt: Gallup Poll Editor Frank Newport says he sees no evidence that Al Gore’s campaign against global warming is winning. “It’s just not caught on,” says Newport. “They have failed.” Or, more bluntly: “Any measure that we look at shows Al Gore’s losing at the moment. The public is just not that concerned.” […] Ask people to name their biggest concerns, and just 1 percent to 2 percent cite the environment. “The environment doesn’t show up at all,” says Newport. “It’s Al Gore’s greatest frustration,” says Newport. “We seem less concerned than more about global warming over the years…Despite the movies and publicity and all that, we’re just not seeing it take off with the American public. And that was occurring even before the latest economic recession.” He adds: “As Al Gore I think would say, the greatest challenge facing humanity . . . has failed to show up in our data.”
Gallup Poll: ‘Record-High 41% of Americans Now Say Global Warming is Exaggerated’ – March 11, 2009 – Excerpt: This represents the highest level of public skepticism about mainstream reporting on global warming seen in more than a decade of Gallup polling on the subject. […] Now, according to Gallup’s 2009 Environment survey, more Americans say the problem is exaggerated rather than underestimated, 41% vs. 28%. […] The 2009 Gallup Environment survey measured public concern about eight specific environmental issues. Not only does global warming rank last on the basis of the total percentage concerned either a great deal or a fair amount, but it is the only issue for which public concern dropped significantly in the past year. […] It is the first time since 1997 that the rate of concern has not increased.
Bloomberg News Poll: 58% of Americans view global warming as ‘minor threat’ or ‘no real threat at all’ – September 15, 2009 – Excerpt: 31 percent [of Americans] say climate change is a minor threat and just 27 percent saying it’s no real threat at all.
Updated: Climate Depot Factsheet on Public Opinion About Global Warming: Americans Growing Increasingly Skeptical – Oct. 26, 2009 – Gallup Poll Editor: Gore has ‘Failed’ — ‘The public is just not that concerned’ about global warming