Increase in Extreme Weather Influencing Public Opinion on Climate Change

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With 70 percent of Americans now agreeing that global warming is affecting weather in the U.S., the public is showing increasing support for measures that would tackle the problem of climate change, according to a new survey.

Conducted by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication, the survey showed that 60 percent of Americans would be more likely to vote for a candidate who supports legislation that would reduce the federal income tax and make up for that decrease in revenue by increasing taxes on fossil fuels.

The ongoing survey — which divides the U.S. public into six categories on global warming, from the alarmed to the dismissive — showed that an overwhelming majority of people who identified themselves as alarmed, concerned, or cautious about global warming say that if people with their views worked together, they could influence politicians’ views on global warming.

The people in these three groups, as well as people who described themselves as disengaged on the issue of global warming, said by a wide margin that they trusted President Obama more than Mitt Romney as a source of information on climate change. Only people who described themselves as dismissive of human-caused climate change said they trusted Romney more than Obama on the issue, the Yale survey showed.

Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.

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Yale Environment 360 is an online magazine offering opinion, analysis, reporting and debate on global environmental issues. We feature original articles by scientists, journalists, environmentalists, academics, policy makers, and business people, as well as multimedia content and a daily digest of major environmental news. Yale Environment 360 is published by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale University. We are funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The opinions and views expressed in Yale Environment 360 are those of the authors and not of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies or of Yale University.