Climate change not a top worry, poll finds

Climate change is not a top concern to the public, according to a Gallup poll released Wednesday.

On a list of 15 national issues, climate change ranks near the bottom with only 24 percent worrying about it “a great deal.”

About half, or 51 percent, said they only worry about climate change a little or not at all.

The poll comes just a day after Senate Democrats wrapped up an all-night talk-a-thon in which they pushed for Congress to tackle climate change. 

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The results are from a survey conducted March 6 to 9. This marked the first year Gallup included climate change on its list of worries.

Concern over the quality of the environment has dropped to 31 percent this year, down 5 percentage points from last year. The new rating is the lowest level of worry for the environment Gallup has recorded since it began measuring the issue in 2001. 

People were worried the most about the environment in 2007, Gallup found, when 43 percent of the public said they worried about it “a great deal.”

Democrats worry about the environment and climate change much more than Republicans, the survey indicates. Forty-five percent of Democrats were concerned about the environment, compared to 16 percent of Republicans. On climate change, 36 percent of Democrats were worried compared to only 10 percent of Republicans.

The economy, federal spending and the budget deficit, and the availability and affordability of healthcare topped the list of issues.