America Is Becoming Lukewarm To Climate Change, Environmental Poll Suggests

Gallup says Americans less concerned about climate change/global warming

Climate change is becoming less of a concern for Americans, at least according the Gallup annual Environment survey.

According to the poll, only 32 percent of our fellow citizens are personally worried a lot about climate change or global warming (down from 34 percent in 2014), which clocks in at the bottom of the list of six environmental problems provided by Gallup to respondents. In contrast, at the top of the list, 55 percent of those surveyed worry a great deal about drinking water pollution (although down from 60 percent last year).

The Gallup poll findings — which may seem surprising given the aggressive climate change push by the Obama administration, the United Nations, the media, academia, and other institutions — were derived from telephone interviews (split 50-50 between landline and mobile phones), with about 1,000 randomly selected adults in all 50 states conducted in early March.

The results seem to be consistent to some extent with other polling data from 2014, as the Inquisitr previously reported. According to one survey from Yale University, which also suggested that skepticism was on the rise, while 53 percent are some what or very worried about the consequences of climate change, less than 50 percent of Americans agreed that human activity is the primary factor in climate change, and 37 percent believe natural variations to the climate are at fault for the warming trend. In another survey, the Pew Research Center found that only 28 percent believe “dealing with global warming” is a top priority, which has gone down from 38 percent in 2007.

Commenting on the latest climate change opinion results, Gallup offering this possible explanation.

“[T]he nature of the environmental agenda may indirectly be influencing Americans’ concern. The primary focus of the environmental movement has shifted toward long-term threats like global warming — issues about which Americans tend to worry less than about more immediate threats like pollution. Importantly, even as global warming has received greater attention as an environmental problem from politicians and the media in recent years, Americans’ worry about it is no higher now than when Gallup first asked about it in 1989.”

Gallup also noted that environmental issues have an inverse relationship to a healthy economy. In other words, people give the environment a lesser priority when the economy is in the doldrums and many are still jobless.

As you might imagine, the results also revealed sharp differences in concerns about climate change among Republicans and Democrats, including those leaning in either ideological direction.

One of many lawmakers still very concerned about climate change and global warming — terms that the Associated Press now says can be used interchangeably — is California Congresswoman Barbara Lee. This week, Rep. Lee introduced a resolution in the U.S. House suggesting that dangerous effects of climate change leading to famine and drought could force women in developing countries to trade sex for food.

[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images News]