Severe Storms, or the “Stormy Effect”? GOP Voters Increasingly Worried about Climate

May 8, 2018

yalepoll0518

Click to enlarge

Whether it’s the severe Storms, or Stormy,  Trump voters notice that somebody’s been lying to them.

Tony Leiserowitz for Yale Program on Climate Communication:

Among Republican registered voters, belief that global warming is happening has increased 4 percentage points, while belief that it is mostly human-caused has increased 9 percentage points since the Fall of 2017. Republicans are also more worried about global warming than they were in the Fall (+5 points).

It appears that the “Trump Effect” – in which Republican opinions on climate change declined after the 2016 election – has bottomed out. Republican opinions have rebounded – in some cases to new record highs. Republican support for strict carbon dioxide limits on existing coal-fired power plants increased 9 points and support for requiring fossil fuel companies to pay a revenue-neutral carbon tax rose 7 points since Fall 2017.

More broadly, public support for a variety of climate and clean energy policies remains strong and bipartisan. Large majorities of registered voters support:

  • Funding more research on renewable energy (87% support), including 94% of Democrats, 83% of Independents, and 79% of Republicans.
  • Generating renewable energy on public land (86% support), including 91% of Democrats, 82% of Independents, and 81% of Republicans.
  • Providing tax rebates to people who purchase energy-efficient vehicles or solar panels (85% support), including 91% of Democrats, 82% of Independents, and 77% of Republicans (+6 points since Fall 2017).
  • Regulating carbon dioxide as a pollutant (81% support), including 91% of Democrats, 80% of Independents, and 69% of Republicans (+8 points since Fall 2017).

Few registered voters think the United States should use more coal (12%; 6% of Democrats, 14% of Independents, and 18% of Republicans) or oil in the future (11%; 7% of Democrats, and 16% of both Independents and Republicans).

supportdarksnow

By contrast, solid majorities of registered Democrats, Independents, and Republicans say the United States should use more solar energy (80%; 84% of Democrats, 80% of Independents, and 75% of Republicans) and wind energy in the future (73%; 82% of Democrats, 75% of Independents, and 62% of Republicans).

Regarding the 2018 Congressional election, 38% of registered voters say a candidates’ position on global warming will be very important when they decide who they will vote for. When asked how important 28 different issues would be in determining who they vote for in the 2018 election, registered voters ranked global warming 15th overall. But among liberal Democrats, global warming was voting issue #4, after healthcare, gun policies, and environmental protection more generally.

Global warming is now a leading issue among the Democratic base. Despite the increase in Republican beliefs and attitudes over the past 6 months, however, it remains a low priority issue among Republicans.

More from the report:

Global Warming Beliefs and Attitudes

  • Most registered voters (73%) think global warming is happening, including 95% of liberal Democrats, 88% of moderate/conservative Democrats and 68% of liberal/moderate Republicans, but only 40% of conservative Republicans.
  • A majority of registered voters (59%) think global warming is caused mostly by human activities, including 84% of liberal Democrats, 70% of moderate/conservative Democrats, and 55% of liberal/moderate Republicans (14 percentage points higher than in October 2017), but only 26% of conservative Republicans.
  • A majority of registered voters (63%) are worried about global warming, including 88% of liberal Democrats, 76% of moderate/conservative Democrats, and 58% of liberal/moderate Republicans, but only 30% of conservative Republicans. Worry about global warming has increased among liberal/moderate Republicans by 15 percentage points since May 2017 and by seven points among conservative Republicans since October 2017.
yalepoll0518a

Click to enlarge

Global Warming and Energy Policies

Large majorities of registered voters across the political spectrum support a range of policies that promote clean energy and reduce carbon pollution and dependence on fossil fuels. These include:

  • Funding more research into renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power (87% of registered voters, 94% of Democrats, 83% of Independents, and 79% of Republicans).
  • Generating renewable energy on public land in the United States (86% of registered voters, 91% of Democrats, 82% of Independents, and 81% of Republicans).
  • Providing tax rebates to people who purchase energy-efficient vehicles or solar panels (85% of registered voters, 91% of Democrats, 82% of Independents, and 77% of Republicans).
  • Regulating carbon dioxide as a pollutant (81% of registered voters, 91% of Democrats, 80% of Independents, and 69% of Republicans).
  • Setting strict carbon dioxide emission limits on existing coal-fired power plants to reduce global warming and improve public health, even if the cost of electricity to consumers and companies would likely increase (73% of registered voters, 87% of Democrats, 70% of Independents, and 56% of Republicans, a nine percentage-point increase since October 2017).
  • Requiring fossil fuel companies to pay a carbon tax and using the money to reduce other taxes (such as income tax) by an equal amount (71% of registered voters, 84% of Democrats, 68% of Independents, and 56% of Republicans, a seven percentage-point increase since October 2017).
  • Three in four registered voters (77%) support continued S. participation in the Paris Climate Agreement, including almost all Democrats (92%), three in four Independents (75%), and a majority of Republicans (60%).
  • A majority of registered voters (66%) oppose President Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement, including 91% of Democrats and 63% of Independents, but only 36% of Republicans.
  • A majority of registered voters (59%) think protecting the environment improves economic growth and provides new jobs. An additional 21% think protecting the environment has no effect on economic growth or jobs. By contrast, only 18% think protecting the environment reduces growth and costs jobs. Conservative Republicans are the only political group more likely to think protecting the environment reduces growth and jobs (39%) versus improves it (32%).
  • When there is a conflict between environmental protection and economic growth, 71% of registered voters think environmental protection is more important, including 85% of Democrats, three in four Independents (75%), and more than half of Republicans (52%).
  • A large majority of registered voters (81%, including 94% of Democrats, 81% of Independents, and 65% of Republicans) say that schools should teach children about the causes, consequences, and potential solutions to global warming.
  • Solid majorities of Democrats, Independents, and Republicans say the United States should use more solar energy (80% of registered voters, 84% of Democrats, 80% of Independents, and 75% of Republicans) and wind energy (73% of registered voters, 82% of Democrats, 75% of Independents, and 62% of Republicans).
  • Only about one in ten registered voters think the United States should use more coal (12% of registered voters; 6% of Democrats, 14% of Independents, and 18% of Republicans) and oil (11% of registered voters; 7% of Democrats, and 16% of both Independents and Republicans). Slightly more than one in three think the United States should use more natural gas (36% of registered voters; 31% of Democrats, 39% of Independents, and 42% of Republicans), and about one in four (23%) think the United States should use more nuclear energy (19% of Democrats, 36% of Independents, and 26% of Republicans).

In December of 2016, pollster Ed Maibach was already sounding very similar notes in regard to public attitudes on climate action.

Advertisements

7 Responses to “Severe Storms, or the “Stormy Effect”? GOP Voters Increasingly Worried about Climate”

  1. indy222 Says:

    They value protecting the environment….. as long as someone else pays for it. Trump popularity has been rising for the past 8 months, despite Stormy, incessant lies, blatant corruption, destruction of the EPA, and the rest. That’s why it’s hard to be optimistic. We are NOT going to get out of this without horrific costs in the NOW in order to avoid even stiffer costs later. People are pandered to, and lapping it up.
    ** +2C is safe
    ** carbon budgets say we have a coupla decades if not more
    ** renewables alone will save us
    ** cut emissions and global temperatures will drift back down

    You name it, the lie is there. Maybe the pandering will be sufficient to get some positive legislation passed, but it’ll be too little too late if the physics and dynamics of civilization continue showing what they do.

  2. dumboldguy Says:

    Yes, rational fatalism rules among those like indy222 who are educated enough to understand the physics and dynamics of “civilization”. Almost everyone else is watching Fox News.

    Maybe we can engrave that on the human species’ gravestone—-“We watched Fox News while runaway AGW occurred and everything died”.

  3. Sir Charles Says:

    Chinapeople now leading the world…

  4. Abel Adamski Says:

    Whilst OT on this subject, of great relevance to the planets future
    A major element behind China’s sea floor grab in the South China Sea
    http://www.popsci.com.au/robots/industrial-robots/and-now-a-ship-that-can-mine-39000-tons-of-ore-from-a-mile-under-water,490046
    // Home // Robots // Industrial Robots
    And now, a ship that can mine 39,000 tons of ore from a mile under water
    Last month in China, the Mawei Shipyards launched the Deep Sea Nautilus, the world’s first ship designed for mining deepwater seabeds.
    The Deep Sea Nautilus is a 745-foot-long megaship capable of carrying 39,000 tons of ore—plus a 200-person crew and deep-sea mining robots. Nautilus Minerals, which owns the ship, plans to start gold and copper mining in the Solwara I, a mile-deep site in the coastal waters of Papua New Guinea.
    Nautilus Minerals is a Canadian company with an ambitious deep-sea mining plan, centered around high-tech underwater robots that wouldn’t look totally out of place in Star Wars. This February the company successfully tested its line-up of three robots at depths of 1,500 meters, or about 0.93 miles, or about 4900 feet.

    Two robots are purpose-built for preparing and pulverizing the metal rich seabed; a third robot will mix the pulverized ore into a slurry, to be pumped up to the Deep Sea Nautilus for further processing.
    Tongling Nonferrous Metals Group, a Chinese copper company, will be the first buyer of Nautilus Minerals’ ore. This kind of purchase further indicates ambitions for large-scale deep-sea operations by Chinese firms. Chinese mining companies already hold three mining licenses in the Pacific Ocean from the International Seabed Authority, while railroad equipment maker China Railroad Corporation purchased Soil Mechanics Dynamic, a leading manufacturer of underwater mining and construction equipment.

    On April 20, the Qianlong III dove to depths of 3,900 meters—or about 2.4 miles—to investigate the seabed and deep-sea wildlife.

    Xinhua

    China’s deep-sea mining would enable the nation to maintain sovereign control over strategic resources like copper and rare earth minerals. Activities in international waters would also extend Chinese commercial presence in the global commons as well as further solidify Chinese claims to waters in the East and South China Seas. And, of course, the vast amount of oceangraphic data gathered by deep sea mining could prove useful to military operations like submarine and anti-submarine warfare.

    What could go wrong, the consequences are potentially catastrophic for the marine environment and ultimately for us


Leave a Reply to dumboldguy Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: