Want proof the climate-change debate has become politicized in the U.S.? Consider a November 2015 survey by the Pew Research Center.
The group asked Americans if they believe global climate change is a “very serious problem.” While 68% of Democrats said it was, only 20% of Republicans did. When asked if climate change is harming people now, 53% of Democrats versus 24% of Republicans agreed.
A month later, the Farm Journal Pulse asked farmers the same question: “Do you think climate change is a serious problem?” A total of 1,783 farmers answered, with 78% saying no and 22% saying yes.
In the Pew Research Center poll, respondents were asked about possible climate-change consequences. In the U.S., drought tops the list of potential risks at 50%, followed by:
- Rising sea levels (17%)
- Severe weather, such as floods or intense storms (16%)
- Long periods of unusually hot temperatures (11%)
In the U.S., women and millennials are most likely to be concerned about climate change. Also, Catholics and the “religiously unaffiliated” are significantly more likely than Protestants to be concerned about climate change.
Globally, Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa are generally the areas most concerned with potential effects of climate change, while China, Australia and parts of Europe are generally the least concerned. Countries with high carbon emissions per capita are less likely to say climate change is a serious problem, according to Pew.