One-third of U.S. voters believe climate change is a crisis
Climate change activists in Los Angeles on Feb. 7. Photo: Ronen Tivony/Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media via Getty Images
Over one-third of registered voters consider climate change a crisis and 59% say the Trump administration is doing too little to address it, a Brunswick Group survey released Tuesday shows.
Why it matters: The datareleased Tuesday arrives as climate is playing a more prominent role in the 2020 election cycle — and the policy stakes are high.
Major Democratic hopefuls have plans that call for more aggressive federal steps than former President Obama took.
- The White House, meanwhile, is continuing its efforts to roll back Obama-era rules and policies.
- The findings tend to show deep partisan splits in voters' views.
By the numbers: 36% agree climate change is a crisis that requires immediate policy changes, though the partisan gap is wide.
- 28% listed climate among the top two topics that will influence their vote in November, making it tied with the economy but well behind health care.
- 67% are either somewhat or very worried about the affordability of energy.
- 61% back the Green New Deal, which the survey defined as a 10-year national mobilization to cut emissions to the maximum extent possible.
- 51% agree a carbon tax is a "good idea," including 41% of Republicans. A quarter of the overall respondent mix were unsure.
- 66% agree that California and other states should have power to regulate vehicle carbon emissions at a time when the Trump administration is seeking to prevent it.
The intrigue: One theme in the findings, Brunswick's polling memo notes, is that "Trump’s brand affects how his supporters view climate policy."
- In one case, Trump voters' support for thwarting California went up when told it was a "Trump administration" policy as opposed to a "U.S. government" move.
- Oil companies' moves on climate have been in the headlines lately, so check out how the Brunswick Group took the pulse on it.
- Voters could select three parties "most responsible" for causing climate change from a menu of seven options (including oil companies, "big business," individuals, government and more). A similar question was asked about addressing it.
Note: The Brunswick Group paid for and conducted the survey of 1,000 voters in December. Questions for the full sample have a margin-of-error of plus-or-minus 3%.