Information about the human causes of global warming influences causal attribution, concern, and policy support related to global warming
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Scientists know that human activities, primarily fossil fuel combustion, are causing Earth's temperature to increase. Yet in 2021, only 60% of the US population understood that human activities are the primary cause of global warming. We experimentally test whether information about the human causes of global warming influences Americans' beliefs and concerns about global warming and support for climate policies. We find that communicating information about the human-causes of global warming increases public understanding that global warming is human-caused. This information, both alone and with additional information about climate impacts and policy solutions, also increases public concern about global warming and support for climate policies, although the effects on climate concern and policy support are smaller. Importantly, the treatment effects are consistent across political party, with no backlash effects among Republicans. This suggests that when informed about climate change causes, impacts and solutions, most Americans can update their own climate change beliefs, risk perceptions, and policy support.