Research Roundup for April, 2017

Highlights from recent research on the science of climate change communication:

  • Just one in four Americans thinks there is too much environmental regulation. A majority believes the United States should stay in the Paris Agreement (YouGov, 2017).
  • A majority of Republicans in Colorado, Nevada, Ohio and Tennessee believe the federal government should take steps to limit carbon pollution. Roughly three in five likely voters in those states want to maintain or improve existing environmental protections (WPA, 2017).
  • Fewer than one in three Americans supports President Trump's efforts to roll back Obama-era climate protections (CNBC, 2017). 
  • Three in four Americans are concerned about climate change. Two in three worry that climate change will affect them or a family member personally (Quinnipiac University, 2017).
  • Americans who believe that humans are changing the climate were very likely to vote for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election (Rhodium Group, 2017).
  • Chinese adults are more likely than American adults to believe the climate is changing. They are also more likely to support an international climate treaty (Jamelske, Boulter, Jang, Miller, & Han, 2017).
  • Extreme protest tactics—such as blocking traffic, damaging property or using inflammatory rhetoric—make potential supporters less likely to identify with protestors (Feinberg, Willer, & Kovacheff, 2017).
  • Climate change threatens personal health and food security. When environmentalists explain this fact, Americans tend to feel more concerned about climate change but, paradoxically, they are less likely to advocate for climate policy. Making the issue personally relevant threatens to make people feel hopeless (Levine, & Kline, 2017).


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