Research Roundup for March, 2019

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

  • Americans have grown considerably more concerned about the environment in recent years, though the environment still ranks below healthcare, government spending, hunger, drugs and crime among their concerns (Gallup, 2019).

  • Broadcast news coverage of climate change declined from 2017 to 2018. ABC, CBS and Fox all covered the issue less than they did in 2017, while only NBC covered it more. Two major reports on climate change, one from the UN and the other from the federal government, drove much of the coverage. Sources featured in broadcast new stories about climate change were overwhelmingly and disproportionately white and male (Media Matters for America, 2019).

  • In 41 states, more people support a Green New Deal than oppose a Green New Deal. In all but one of those states, jobs in clean energy and energy efficiency outnumber jobs in fossil fuels (Data for Progress, 2019).

  • Two in three Americans say the Republican Party is "outside the mainstream" on climate change, while a majority say the Democratic Party is "in the mainstream" on climate change. On no other issue do so many people think Republicans are outside the mainstream (NBC News & Wall Street Journal, 2019).

  • A majority of Americans trust Democrats in Congress to deal with climate change. Less than one in four trust Republicans to do so (Navigator Research, 2019).

  • When people believe that their family and friends are worried about climate change, they are more likely to feel worried about climate change themselves. This is particularly true among conservatives (Goldberg, van der Linden, Leiserowitz, & Maibach, 2019).

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