Unbelievers – the US and Climate Change

By , July 24th, 2014 | Science | 1 Comment

When you’re talking climate change, it seems that the United States is trailing behind much of the rest of the world.

A recent poll conducted by UK firm Ipsos Mori indicates that only 54% of Americans believe that human activity is responsible for climate change. While this may seem to indicate that ‘most’ Americans agree that humans are responsible, it puts the US at the bottom of 20 countries surveyed, 10 points below the 19th country, Australia. Americans also seem to be unconcerned by the effects of climate change – over 42% of them feel that the effects will not be as bad as predicted by scientists. China led the survey, with 93% of survey respondents believing that human activity has contributed to climate change.

The United States is a major influence on global policy and thinking. Their disbelief and lack of support for action to address climate change is cause for concern. A leading producer of oil in the world, and a major consumer (almost 19 million barrels a day in a recent announcement), America’s carbon footprint is on the rise – again. Action will only be taken with the support of the American people, who seem to have let partisan politics interfere with common sense and scientific evidence.

The United States is experiencing higher than average temperatures across the country, with severe drought affecting one third. In spite of this evidence, Americans feel that climate change is being exaggerated, and will not affect them. Scientists warn that anyone living on the coast, or dependent on global food supply, will be affected by climate change in the future. And while Americans do feel that business should pay more attention to global warming, they need to understand that business will change their attitude and behavior when the public puts pressure on them to do so.

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24Jul
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