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Fewer Americans prioritizing environment over economic growth in recent years: Gallup

Fewer Americans prioritizing environment over economic growth in recent years: Gallup
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The percentage of Americans who prioritize protecting the environment over strengthening the economy has dropped in recent years, according to a new poll. 

The Gallup survey released on Thursday showed that 50 percent of adults in the U.S. say “protection of the environment should be given priority, even at the risk of curbing economic growth.” That percentage is down from 60 percent who said the same early last year and 65 percent in 2019. 

The new survey found that 42 percent of U.S. adults said that “economic growth should be given priority, even if the environment suffers to some extent.” That percentage is up from 30 percent who agreed in 2019.

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Gallup noted that Americans’ views on protecting the environment, even “at the risk of curbing economic growth,” typically reflects the unemployment rate in the country, with more survey respondents choosing the economy as unemployment ticks up. 

The unemployment rate has been higher in 2020 and 2021 than in recent years in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on businesses across the country. 

When broken down by party, Republican voters are significantly more likely to prioritize the economy over the environment when asked to pick between the two. Sixty-eight percent of Republicans chose “economic growth” rather than “protection of the environment” in in the poll released Thursday, compared to 23 percent of Democrats who agreed.

President BidenJoe BidenBiden administration still seizing land near border despite plans to stop building wall: report Olympics, climate on the agenda for Biden meeting with Japanese PM Boehner on Afghanistan: 'It's time to pull out the troops' MORE has long viewed his climate plan as part of a larger economic vision. Biden during his presidential campaign said his administration’s response to climate change could create more than 10 million jobs.

The Gallup survey was conducted March 1-15 with a random sample of 1,010 adults in the U.S. The margin of sampling error is 4 percentage points.