A new poll by the Center for Climate Change Communication (4C) at George Mason University finds that a majority of U.S. citizens who identify as Republicans or Republican-leaning independents want the government to do more to tackles climate change. Sixty-two percent of those polled said that the U.S. government “absolutely should” or “probably should” takes steps to address climate change. This goes against the views of many Republican congressmen—as well as the party platform—who largely oppose action on climate change.
“The findings from this survey suggest there is considerable support among conservatives for accelerating the transition away from fossil fuels and toward clean renewable forms of energy, and for taking steps to address climate change,” said Edward Maibach, director of 4C at George Mason University. “Perhaps the most surprising finding, however, is how few of our survey respondents agreed with the Republican Party’s current position on climate change.”
The survey found that only 35 percent of those polled agreed with the Republican platform on climate change, which opposes cap-and-trade legislation and demands halting the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) from regulating greenhouse gases.
Republicans also strongly approved support for renewable energy in the poll. Seventy-seven percent of those polled said the U.S. should use more renewable energy and nearly two-thirds of these said the transition should begin “immediately.” Fifty-two percent of Republicans polled said that fossil fuel use should be curbed as well.
“Over the past few years, our surveys have shown that a growing number of Republicans want to see Congress do more to address climate change,” added Maibach.
Global warming has caused temperatures to rise by approximately 0.8 degrees Celsius (1.4 degrees Fahrenheit) over the last century. Already climate change is leading to rising sea levels, melting glaciers, vanishing Arctic sea ice, acidifying marine waters, and worsening floods and droughts among other impacts.
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Near-record jump in carbon concentrations in global atmosphere last year
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