A bipartisan poll released Monday finds that a majority of Americans believe global warming is happening and want the US government to act. The Senate will discuss a global warming bill Tuesday.
As the United States Senate ramps up its efforts on climate-change legislation this week, a bipartisan poll released Monday suggests that a strong majority of voters believe global warming is a real and needs to be remedied.
Some 56 percent of likely general-election voters say global warming is happening now, and a further 21 percent say it will happen in the future, according to a survey by Democratic Pollster Mark Mellman and Republican pollster Bill McInturff. By contrast, some 16 percent said global warming will not happen.
The study was funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts Global Warming Campaign.
When asked whether they favored having the United States take steps to reduce the emission of gases like carbon dioxide that cause global warming, 77 percent of respondents favored action, 18 percent opposed action, and 5 percent were undecided.
“The battle for legitimacy of the global warming issue has largely been won with the public,” Mr. Mellman said at a Monitor sponsored breakfast for reporters. “There is no evidence that we have uncovered in Democratic districts of a backlash against those who support this legislation,” he added.
Striking a contrary note, though, a survey released in October by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press suggests that Americans' certainty about climate change is declining. It found that the percentage of Americans surveyed who believe there is “solid evidence the earth is warming” has dropped from 71 percent to 57 percent since April 2008.
Fighting global warming = jobs?
In the survey by Messrs. Mellman and McInturff, a large plurality of voters canvassed – 48 percent – thought efforts to reduce global warming would create new American jobs. The view that efforts to reduce global warming will cost American jobs was held by 27 percent of those surveyed. Another 16 percent thought efforts to remedy global warming would have no effect on jobs.