Energy & Environment

Americans’ climate change views largely unchanged over last few years: poll

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Americans’ views on climate change appear largely unchanged over the last few years, according to a poll released on Friday.

The Washington Post-ABC News survey found that 67 percent of respondents believe that global warming is a serious problem for the United States, compared to 63 percent who felt the same in a similar poll published in 2015. Among Americans who were also asked the same question in 2014, 69 percent said it is a serious issue.

The poll released Friday found that 31 percent of Americans feel climate change is not a serious problem, compared to 36 percent who felt similarly in 2015.

The Washington Post reports that 95 percent of Democrats in the poll believe climate change is a serious issue, compared to 81 percent in 2015. For Republicans, the numbers have actually declined: 39 percent say global warming is a serious issue, compared to 43 percent in 2015.

While 45 percent of Americans polled this year considered climate change to be an “urgent problem,” that is also down from 53 percent who said the same in a 2018 ABC/Stanford/RFF poll.

The Washington Post-ABC News poll also found that 70 percent of Americans believe that the federal government should regulate the release of greenhouse gases; 74 percent felt the same in a similar Washington Post-KFF poll. 

The latest poll comes as the United Nations climate summit in Scotland, COP26, wraps up its negotiations on global efforts to confront the matter. The latest proposal released Friday showed watered-down language from a previous draft agreement on Thursday over the use of phasing out fossil fuel subsidies and coal. 

The Washington Post-ABC News poll was conducted Nov. 7-10 and polled 1,001 adults by telephone. The poll included 25 percent of people polled by landline and 75 percent by cellphone. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points. 

Tags Climate change COP26 Global warming UN Climate Summit

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