New poll results indicate U.S. political will on climate change

CC voterThe New York Times, Stanford University, and the non-governmental organization Resources for the Future released poll results today that show “an overwhelming majority of the American public” (2/3) supports government action to curb global warming. This includes 48% of Republican voters, who replied that they are more likely to vote for a candidate who supports fighting climate change.  Professor Jon A. Krosnick of Stanford University, one of the survey’s authors, views this last result as “the most powerful finding.”

Beyond voter behavior, this new poll also indicates that a growing number of people in the U.S. believe that climate change is caused by human behavior.  A 2011 Stanford poll showed that 72% of respondents thought that climate change was caused at least in part by human activities. Today’s poll results show that number has grown to 81% (88% of Democrats, 83% of independents, and 71% of Republicans).  These trend lines comport with recent poll data published by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communications.

One independent voter polled summed up the basis for his reply: “If someone feels it’s a hoax they are denying the evidence out there. Many arguments can be made on both sides of the fence. But to just ignore it completely indicates a close-minded individual, and I don’t want a close-minded individual in a seat of political power.”

For more analysis of these poll results and their potential impacts on the 2016 presidential campaign, view these graphics here.