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Extreme Weather and Climate Change in the American Mind in November 2013

Extreme Weather and Climate Change in the American Mind in November 2013

Highlights:

  • Compared to the record-setting extreme weather disaster years of 2011 and 2012, the year 2013 in the United States was relatively calm, with no land-falling hurricanes, fewer tornadoes, and drought relief in the Great Plains. In turn, fewer Americans say they experienced an extreme weather event last year. People in the Northeast, Midwest, and South, however, were more likely to report experiencing extreme cold or a snowstorm in 2013 than they did in 2012.
  • Over half of Americans (56%) say “global warming is affecting weather in the United States.”
  • A large majority of Americans say their state and local government should make it a priority to protect public water supplies (78%), transportation/roads/bridges (73%), people’s health (72%), the electricity system (71%), agriculture (70%), and public sewer systems (69%) from extreme weather over the next 10 years.

 

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Climate Change in the American Mind: Americans’ Global Warming Beliefs and Attitudes in November 2013

Climate Change in the American Mind: Americans’ Global Warming Beliefs and Attitudes in November 2013

The most recent national Climate Change in the American Mind survey found that 1 in 4 Americans think that global warming is not happening, and half say they are "worried" about it. 

Other highlights include:

  • There has been an increase in the proportion of Americans who believe global warming is not happening (23%, up 7 percentage points since April 2013). But about two in three Americans (63%) believe global warming is happening, a number that has been consistent since spring 2013.
  • The proportion of Americans who say they “don’t know” whether or not global warming is happening has dropped 6 points – from 20% to 14% – since spring of 2013.
  • About half of Americans (51%) say they are “somewhat” (38%) or “very worried” (15%) about global warming.
  • Fewer than half of Americans (38%) believe they personally will be harmed a “moderate amount” or a “great deal” by global warming.
  • By contrast, majorities believe that global warming will harm future generations of people (65%) and plant and animal species (65%).
  • About four in 10 say they feel “helpless” (43%), “disgusted” (42%), or “sad” (40%) when thinking about global warming.
  • By contrast, four in ten (42%), say they feel “hopeful” about the subject.
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Anthony Leiserowitz on MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry Show

On Saturday, January 11th, 2013, YPCCC Director Anthony Leiserowitz spent the morning discussing, among other things, the parallels between climate change and the smoking debate on MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry Show.  Watch the conversation below.

Segment 1:

 
Segment 2:
 

 

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Can people detect changes in their local climate?

Can people detect changes in their local climate?

The journal Global Environmental Change recently published an article we wrote examining the accuracy of perceptions about local climate conditions and whether they may be influenced by prior beliefs about the reality of global warming.

 

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Giving Climate Thanks

This holiday season, we’re giving #ClimateThanks. With friends and colleagues across the climate community, we are taking a moment to tweet or post who or what we are thankful for in the fight for a safe climate. Please Tweet #ClimateThanks and help us raise awareness about the amazing things people are doing and build a stronger sense of solidarity among the far-flung climate community.

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American perceptions of hydraulic fracturing

American perceptions of hydraulic fracturing

We co-authored an original article using our research on public opinion about fracking, published in the journal Energy Policy.

Highlights:

  • We conducted a survey of Americans' views on hydraulic fracturing in September 2012
  • A majority of Americans have heard little or nothing about hydraulic fracturing.
  • Many Americans do not know if they support/oppose it or are undecided.
  • Those who have made a decision are evenly split between support and opposition.
  • Predictors of support include education, media use and top of mind associations.
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