Climate Concern Climbs in Polls

July 21, 2021

Economist:

Joe Biden began his presidency by passing a massively popular economic stimulus and covid-19 relief bill. He ended his first 100 days, and will begin the rest of his presidency, trying to get Republicans in Washington on board with an ambitious infrastructure-spending bill, which the public also favours. Mr Biden has also pledged to find a leading role for America in tackling climate change, and has said he wants to to restore and strengthen America’s traditional foreign alliances. Each policy marks a break with the previous administration.

Also,

Axios:

A majority of Americans say they are in favor of transitioning to 100% clean energy by 2035, regardless of whether they’re living in a blue or red state, according to new polling provided first to Axios

Why it matters: The polling, presented in the form of a national map broken down by states and congressional districts, shows how popular the idea of the clean energy transition can be. It could serve as a warning sign for lawmakers opposing clean energy provisions in the infrastructure bills under negotiation on Capitol Hill.

What they did: Researchers from Third Way and the University of California at Santa Barbara used a statistical model to analyze survey results from 20,455 individuals. Each person was asked the same question: “Would you support or oppose the government moving the country to a 100% clean energy electricity grid by 2035?”

  • They then used peer-reviewed techniques to take the data and “downscale it” using demographic data from the Census to see how it may apply regionally, state-by-state, and congressional district-by-district. 

What they found: Support among likely voters for President Biden’s clean energy goal is surprisingly broad, the poll found. 

  • The majority of voters in every state and in all but six congressional districts endorsed the goal of a 100% clean energy grid. 
  • Even deep red states such as Mississippi and Alabama showed clear majority support for Biden’s goal. And coal-producing states, such as Wyoming and West Virginia, showed narrow majority support (52% and 53%, respectively).
  • The policy goal was also popular in states featuring midterm election campaigns, like Arizona, Georgia, and Ohio. 
  • Matto Mildenberger, an associate professor of political science at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a co-author of the new report, has found that the techniques used in this study match the true values of independent polling data to within 3 percentage points. 
  • They also match views at the congressional district level to within 7 percentage points or less, he said. 

What they’re saying: “It shows us that there is a base of support for federal action to move the country to 100% clean electricity in every single state across the country, and that’s all blue, all red states, swing states,” Lindsey Walter, the deputy director of Third Way’s climate and energy program, told Axios.

27 Responses to “Climate Concern Climbs in Polls”

  1. redskylite Says:

    What strikes me the most is the apparent Global synchronization of the recent extreme events, extremely unusually severe flooding has just occurred in Europe, North America, China and in the South Island of New Zealand, while many studies/reports highlight the regional nature of Climate Change. What is also worrisome is a recent report on the expected increase of flooding events, in the near future, due to a periodic alignment of our moon.

    Time to get planning.

    =============================
    Starting in the mid-2030s, however, the alignment of rising sea levels with a lunar cycle will cause coastal cities all around the U.S. to begin a decade of dramatic increases in flood numbers, according to the first study that takes into account all known oceanic and astronomical causes for floods.

    https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/study-projects-a-surge-in-coastal-flooding-starting-in-2030s

  2. J4Zonian Says:

    “It could serve as a warning sign for lawmakers opposing clean energy provisions”

    Really? The US citizenry is overwhelmingly progressive on almost every issue. 60-90% have favored universal health care, a Green New Deal, higher taxes on the rich, affordable education, a better safety net, and dozens of other progressive positions–for decades. But we don’t have any of that stuff. The oligarchy effectively shuts down every move to improve the lives of people and continues to intensify rob them. They’ve passed laws making every option unaffordable, illegal, or likely to result in unending vindictive retaliation or death–right wing control and concentration of media, supposedly protected whistleblowing, voting at every level, lawsuits, protests, and other avenues to improvement. Both parties are doing it. When are people going to figure this out?

    The only way to avoid fascism and ecological, economic, and political collapse is a massive, relentless peaceful revolution. When are people going to figure that out?

    • J4Zonian Says:

      oops. “intensify robbing them”.

    • redskylite Says:

      Problem is it would have to be a global relentless, peaceful revolution, and that is highly unlikely to happen, given the makeup of the world’s nations.

      The Poll above gives some comfort for the U.S.A, especially considering that when these polls are broken down the positives are strongest among young folk.

      In 2016 I was very disheartened with the “Orange” haired one was in charge of your great nation, this coming right after Britain’s hasty shock retreat from the European Union.

      There is a strong force steering us in the right direction, not quickly enough as yet, but the motivation of a large sector of people is gaining momentum.

      People are beginning to accept the damage fossils have incurred and understand they need replacing.

      People and education centres are working hard on the low and non GHG emission technologies.

      Keep pushing, the message is getting through.
      ===========================================
      “Hundreds of cities back U.N. fight against global woes

      Some had been driven to step up because their national governments had not, but also because they saw the global goals as a way to frame their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. ”

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-un-globalgoals-cities/hundreds-of-cities-back-u-n-fight-against-global-woes-idUSKBN2ER2AX

      • redskylite Says:

        World on ‘Borrowed Time’ as Celebs Urge MPs to Pass Climate Emergency Bill

        The proposed legislation has so far won the support of 110 MPs across eight political parties – but still has a long way to go.

        https://www.desmog.com/2021/07/21/climate-emergency-bill-uk-environment/

      • jimbills Says:

        redsky – Unfortunately, it’s only a matter of time before the U.S. swings to the right again. Our history is a never-ending pendulum of moving from one party to the other, to the other, to the other, as Americans get tired of the party in power.

        Additionally, the right has a stranglehold on electoral maps, and it’s very difficult to elect liberal candidates except in overwhelmingly liberal areas. Biden won the popular vote by millions, but in terms of winning the election electorally, where it actually counts in our system, he really only won by 80,000 votes. Since then, Republicans have been working hard to shrink that tiny percentage even further using state legislatures.

        This post about how Americans care more about climate is just spin to me. The first poll seems to be asking people what is THE most important issue to them now. 13% replied the climate in 2021, a rise from 5% in 2010. That’s not nothing, but it’s hardly a sea change in overall voter priorities.

        On the poll reported in Axios, it is likely that a majority wants a clean electricity grid, but it doesn’t matter in terms of how people actually vote. A person might want a.clean grid, but if their priorities favor other issues more, they’ll vote for the party that represents those priorities. A pro-gun person might want more solar power, but they might also fear gun legislation more than that, and their vote will reflect that.

        Americans do NOT prioritize climate change. Or rather, only 13% of Americans prioritize climate change. I’d be one of those 13%, but I’d still be in a small minority.

        • redskylite Says:

          I know you can take opinion polls with a pinch of salt and many democracies continually swing between left and right, and yet there is some pressure from the youngsters who will be affected more than septuagenarians, like me and the orange haired one. Weren’t the GOP responsible for ending slavery ?
          =========================

          Young Republicans see shift in GOP: ‘From outright denial to climate caucus’

          The party has changed a lot since then, with former President Trump — who cast doubt on climate change and diluted multiple environmental regulations during his time in office — still the de facto leader of the party.

          But with two-thirds of Americans indicating that the government should do more on climate change . . . .

          https://thehill.com/policy/equilibrium-sustainability/561208-young-republicans-see-shift-in-gop-from-outright-denial-to

          • jimbills Says:

            Slavery and Republicans: while it’s technically true that the GOP ended slavery, on an actual voter and regional level to credit the current GOP with that fact, it is not. The Southern states were solidly Democratic in 1860. But the descendants of those people (I am one of those descendants, so of course there are always exceptions) moved solidly to the GOP starting in the 1960s, mostly because of racist backlash to civil rights legislation. They are now the same group of voters going to Trump rallies in coal rollers. The only difference between the people who fought for the Confederacy and the people now is time and party affiliation.

            You’d think the GOP would become more reasonable as time passed, but there are zero signs of it tangibly as yet. Right now, the voice of reason in the GOP is Liz Cheney, the daughter of Dick Cheney, and a politician with a heavily conservative voting record, including on environmental issues. We can look back on the Bush years as moderate compared to the current GOP.

            Younger and newly elected Republicans are people like Madison Cawthorn, Josh Hawley, and Matt Gaetz. I can’t name one of the younger GOP representatives that is a solid voice for climate change action.

            It’s pretty clear to me that while younger GOP voters might accept climate change as a real thing, they are not voting with that concern as a priority.

            IF it happens one day that the GOP seriously adopts climate change action in their platform due to generational change, and I think that would be at least 10+ years down the road, their history shows it would be in the form of advocating free market solutions – pretty much what we are doing now, anyway.

          • redskylite Says:

            Thanks for the candid overview, I travelled the U.S in the 70’s and also attended various IBM computer training courses, through my job in the Middle East, found the people very friendly and relaxed especially in the South, also worked closely with some Texan oil men, found the were very business oriented, but good family men. I really hope the Republicans can change and Climate change can become a bi-partisan issue in time. We do not have much of that, unfortunately.

      • J4Zonian Says:

        It’s no comfort at all, since winning slowly is the same as losing. We’re clearly in the nearly vertical portion of the exponential curve of effects; so imagine what it’s going to be like in 10 years. The world will be unable to implement solutions and it will be too late to save anything.

        It’s unlikely we’ll be able to avoid that now, and I make no claims that anything different will happen. But given the timeline of both effects and responses, the only way to change it is yes, a global revolution—as I’ve often said. It’s more likely than it seems. In 1848 revolutions swept across Europe. Violent backlash made most of them short-lived but a fair amount stuck, influencing the politics of Europe ever since.

        China and most of Europe, especially Scandinavia, are well ahead of the US, Australia, Japan, Russia, MENA… and are moving faster. India’s reality and plans are leading to 2° over pre-industrial temp instead of the 4-5° that the US, China, etc. are leading to. Dozens of other countries are well-along, too, in Central and South America, etc. At least 65 have mostly renewably powered grids; 22 of them at or near 100%. But primary energy lags behind, sometimes far behind, in all but 2 countries.

        So despite the overwhelming popular desire for faster change, every government is giving every other government cover to do too little, and even if just the US changes it will put even more pressure on the rest. People are more than ready for governments to move (though they generally don’t know what they’ll have to give up either solving or not solve the crisis.)

  3. rhymeswithgoalie Says:

    It’s good news for the mainstream media! They were going into withdrawal after The Former Guy left office and their viewership dropped. Now all this exciting footage of floods and wildfire has caught people’s interests again (for a while).

    I need a drink.

    • John Swallow Says:

      “It doesn’t matter what is true,
      it only matters what people believe is true.”
      – Paul Watson,
      co-founder of Greenpeace

      “The only way to get our society to truly change is to frighten people with the possibility of a catastrophe.”
      -professor David Botkin

      • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

        “[I]t only matters what people believe is true.”

        In a political sense, yes. In terms of the physics of greenhouse gases, no.

        “The only way to get our society to truly change is to frighten people with the possibility of a catastrophe.”
        Sometimes the wolf is real.

        Rapid increases in greenhouse gases are changing our climate away from what humans, our crops and wildlife are used to.

        When a hurricane threatens the Gulf Coast, there’s a range of probabilities of where it will hit. If there’s more than a 10% chance of a major making landfall in the area, officials recommend evacuation. This means, by definition, many more people will evacuate than will have needed to. Everybody knows this beforehand, but you shouldn’t wait for the risk to be 100% before you take action.

        AGW-caused or worsened disasters are happening now.
        Climate/weather-related disasters will get worse.
        How much worse will depend on whether we can reduce GHG levels in the atmosphere.

        Describing a heatwave that hit Timbuktu in 1873 or a flood in Shaanxi in 1444 is irrelevant to the situation we’re in now, which is a rapid increase in the frequency and severity of extreme weather conditions on Earth. Showing that floodwaters once hit a higher level in one town a hundred years ago when we’re talking about several dozen towns being flash-flooded at the same time now is irrelevant.

        • J4Zonian Says:

          Excellent points. And good hurricane analogy.

          Of course there’s already almost a 100% chance of severe disruption of global civilization. Wolves are real.

          I think the best way to get society to change is to be honest with people, tell them what’s happening, what’s very likely to happen, what needs to happen for the impending disaster to be avoided, what’s keeping us from doing that, to help make them warriors rather than believe they’re bystanders or be victims, as we all are. Of course if we tell people honestly what’s happening and they’re not shocked, scared, angry… that tells us more about them than what’s happening. Telling people the truth while someone is helping them negotiate the shock, dissociation, and emotions they feel is the best way—probably the only way—to make them warriors quickly enough to matter.

          • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

            The AGW and COVID denialists only have ears for Murdoch/Sinclair/Russian disinformation.

          • John Swallow Says:

            J4Zonian Says: “I think the best way to get society to change is to be honest with people, tell them what’s happening, what’s very likely to happen, what needs to happen for the impending disaster to be avoided, what’s keeping us from doing that, to help make them warriors rather than believe they’re bystanders or be victims, as we all are”.

            If J4Zonian was going to be honest with people, then J4Zonian would make no mention as to what he ‘thinks’ will happen in the future because J4Zonian has absolutely NO idea what is going to happen climatically in the future.

            “We need to get some broad based support, to capture the public’s imagination… So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements and make little mention of any doubts… Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest.” – Stephen Schneider, Stanford Professor of Climatology, lead author of many IPCC reports

            “Unless we announce disasters no one will listen.” – Sir John Houghton, first chairman of IPCC

            How correct was this stupid prediction that was made in 2007?
            “It is consistent with the climate change message. It is exactly what we expect winters to be like – warmer and wetter, and dryer and hotter summers. …the winter we have just seen is consistent with the type of weather we expect to see more and more in the future.” Wayne Elliott, Met Office meteorologist, BBC, 27 Feb 2007
            J4Zonian’s prediction of any future climate events would be no more accurate that what the Met Office meteorologist, Wayne Elliott’s, were in 2007.

            “It is exactly what we expect winters to be like – warmer and wetter”

            Major weather stations’ new all-time heat or cold records in January 2021
            Among global stations with a record of at least 40 years, 34 set, not just tied, a new all-time cold record in January, and two stations set all-time heat records:
            Vega de Liordes (Spain) min. -35.8°C, January 7: New national record low for Spain (unofficial, recorded in a sinkhole);
            This is the caption under the photo at this site.
            Spain lies blanketed in heavy snow on January 12, 2021, in the wake of Windstorm Filomena, Earth’s most expensive weather-related disaster of January, with $2.2 billion in damage to Madrid alone. (Image credit: Modified Sentinel-3 satellite data from Pierre Markuse)
            https://yaleclimateconnections.org/2021/02/noaa-january-2021-was-ninth-warmest-on-record-in-the-u-s-seventh-warmest-globally/

          • John Swallow Says:

            “It is consistent with the climate change message. It is exactly what we expect winters to be like – warmer and wetter, and dryer and hotter summers. …the winter we have just seen is consistent with the type of weather we expect to see more and more in the future.” Wayne Elliott, Met Office meteorologist, BBC, 27 Feb 2007
            This is another look at how far off with his dire predictions that Wayne Elliott, Met Office meteorologist, was on 27 Feb 2007 when he said this nonsense; “It is exactly what we expect winters to be like – warmer and wetter, and dryer and hotter summers.”
            “Germany braces for more torrential rain as some areas hit by severe flooding
            14 July 2021
            Saxony, Bavaria and North Rhine-Westphalia have all been struck by torrential downpour as the German Weather Service issued its highest possible warning. The heavy rain is expected to last until Friday.”
            https://www.thelocal.de/20210714/germany-braces-for-more-torrential-rain-as-some-areas-hit-by-severe-flooding/

            It is only natural that the global warming zealots, such as the clueless J4Zonian, are blaming the dry heat conditions in American’s West Coast on climate change and the trace gas, CO₂, at the same time that they are blaming the flooding in Germany on, guess what, climate change and the trace gas, CO₂. How could a molecule that we all exhale with each breath, CO₂, suddenly develop into such a vicious devil in the sky when there is so little of it in the Earth’s atmosphere?

          • dumboldguy Says:

            GO AWAY!

  4. John Swallow Says:

    What do you think is the most important problem facing the country today?
    As of Jun 2021 only 3% of those polled in this Gallup survey felt that climate change is a big issue.
    Environment/Pollution/Climate change 3 3 3 2 3 2 2
    https://news.gallup.com/poll/1675/Most-Important-Problem.aspx

    It appears that who does the polling and how the questions are asked makes a huge difference in the polls results.

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      It appears that who does the polling and how the questions are asked makes a huge difference in the polls results.

      Absolutely.

      There’s a huge difference between what humans perceive as threats and what are actual threats. A lot of that perception is driven by what Murdoch, the Sinclair Group, the Koch- or Exxon-funded talking points people are exposed to (and share on social media). There’s also a major political component: Murdoch/Sinclair hyped the threat from the four Americans that got Ebola, and pretty much downplay the 600,000 Americans who died from a pandemic that wasn’t taken seriously. How much air-time did they give to the 4 Americans who died in the Benghazi attacks? (Not that they really gave a damn about those four people, but they hyped it up to undermine the election chances of a political opponent.)

      • J4Zonian Says:

        Yes, it’s a particularly cynical and disgusting method of denial and delay when the psychopaths lie to people to keep them from understanding how serious the threat is and then use the victims’ perceptions to bolster denial of the threat. Compound lie piled on compound lie. Weaponized projective identification.

        • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

          Fascist assholes like Hawley spend a lot of time convincing the base that the election was fraudulent and voter fraud is rampant, then the slimy bastard smiles innocently and declares he’s only representing what his voters believe, as if he had nothing to do with the disinformation in the first place.

          • John Swallow Says:

            rhymeswithgoalie certainly has trouble staying with the topic in these discussions. Is it because rhymeswithgoalie struggles to recall what the topic of discussion was, in this case; ‘Climate Concern Climbs in Polls’? One can wonder at why, if rhymeswithgoalie hates the Senator from Missouri, Josh Hawley, to the degree that rhymeswithgoalie seems to, why they have not run for a Senate seat and put forth their own views and opinions where they can make a difference instead of just ranting and raving like a banshee on an obscure climate change web site?

            Josh Hawley Speaks About Internal ICE Documents That Show Biden Admin Policies Limiting Deportations

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      One can wonder at why, if rhymeswithgoalie hates the Senator from Missouri, Josh Hawley, to the degree that rhymeswithgoalie seems to, why they have not run for a Senate seat and put forth their own views and opinions where they can make a difference instead of just ranting and raving like a banshee on an obscure climate change web site?

      First, I’m not from Missouri.
      Second, while I’m certainly more qualified than many US Senators to write and understand legislation, I am not geared for a top-seat role (perhaps research staff who tend to be more informed than the Senators themselves) my background and interests are in skepticism, human cognition, engineering, practical infrastructure and methods of scientific discovery.

      As for deportations, even though I expect that Hawley is spinning the situation, I am all for (1) prioritizing the deportation of dangerous criminals, (2) following the law about due process for asylum applicants, (3) following the law about how long children can be kept in certain facilities, (4) medical care of sick, injured and malnourished immigrants, (5) criminalizing the abuse of immigrants by ICE agents or cops.

      Are you against any of those things, 1-5?

      • John Swallow Says:

        rhymeswithgoalie Says: “First, I’m not from Missouri”, that has nothing to do with my suggestion that if he is so angered by what the members of the US Senate are doing; “why they have not run for a Senate seat”, where there I make no mention of the State of Missouri. Perhaps it is like Karl Popper observed; “It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood.” Karl Popper
        I have no doubt that perhaps rhymeswithgoalie, along with millions of other Americans, are more qualified than many US Senators, who try to write and understand legislation, such as Oregon’s Jeff Merkley or Massachusetts’ senators Edward “Ed” Markey and Elizabeth Warren who is better known as ‘Pocahontas’ for lying and claiming to be a native American.
        Grounds for Deportation from the United States

        This is what the law on the books states that the far left thumbs their nose at. A nation without borders is no longer a nation.
        The U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”) sets forth numerous grounds for the deportation (“removal”) of non-citizens. Common grounds for deportation from the United States include (but are not limited to):
        • Criminal convictions,
        • Being in the U.S. unlawfully, and
        • Fraud.
        • The immigrant does not have permission to enter the U.S.
        https://www.shouselaw.com/ca/immigration/deportation-defense/grounds-for-deportation/


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