72% OF AMERICANS SEE GLOBAL WARMING AS IMPORTANT TO THEM PERSOANALLY

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23 january 2019

72 percent of Americans say climate change is important

By Lisa Friedman, Somini Sengupta and Eduardo Garcia, New York Times, January 23, 2019

Two major new polls are in, and they both found that Americans are more attuned to the threats of climate change than ever before.

My colleague John Schwartz wrote about one of the big surveys, which was conducted by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and the George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication. It found that about 73 percent of Americans believe global warming is occurring, a record high and a jump of 10 percentage points from 2015. Another record: The percentage of Americans who said global warming is personally important to them was 72 percent, an increase of nine points since March.

Those results mirrored a separate survey, from the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, that found 71 percent of Americans believe climate change is happening. About half of those people said they found the science of climate change to be more conclusive than it was five years ago and the vast majority cited extreme weather as the main reason.

And the science remains dire. A new study, which my colleague John also wrote about, found that Greenland is losing ice at a pace never before seen.

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