MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A new survey shows concern about climate change is growing in the United States.
The Gallup poll, taken in early March, found a record-high 62 percent of Americans believe the effects of global warming are happening now.
Another record-high number — 68 percent of Americans — now believe global warming is caused mainly by pollution from human activities.
“The science behind the greenhouse effect was proven in 1863 by physicist Dr. John Tyndall — it’s not new information,” said Mike Augustyniak, WCCO’s Director of Meteorology. “What has improved in recent years is our understanding of how human-caused pollution can act to strengthen the greenhouse effect; and, how that interplays with cycles of natural climate variability and the ability of the earth to heal itself.”
Almost half of all Americans — 45 percent — say they worry “a great deal” about global warming.
“The vast majority of climate scientists believe human influences are the main driver behind global climate change, and it’s encouraging to see that the vast majority of Americans recognize that,’ Augustyniak said. “Understanding is the first step to coming together to figure out a fix to this problem that affects all of us — rich, poor, high-tech and low-tech.”
Recent years filled with record-breaking weather may account for the shift in attitudes, but Gallup also says anxiety about President Donald Trump’s environmental policy could be a factor.
The new poll found 57 percent of Americans think Trump will do a poor job of protecting the environment.