There exists a high degree of polarization when it comes to the issue of climate change. In a recent survey by the Pew Research Center, data shows a clear divide in not only the general public’s view of climate change, but also their trust in climate scientists.
“Specifically, the survey finds wide political divides in views of the potential for devastation to the Earth’s ecosystems and what might be done to address any climate impacts. There are also major divides in the way partisans interpret the current scientific discussion over climate, with the political left and right having vastly divergent perceptions of modern scientific consensus, differing levels of trust in the information they get from professional researchers, and different views as to whether it is the quest for knowledge or the quest for professional advancement that drives climate scientists in their work.”
–The Politics of Climate Change, Pew Research Center
In general, the public view on climate change over the last decade has remained relatively stable and currently only 48% of American adults agree that climate change is occurring due to human activities.
Of those that are concerned with climate change and the environment, only 1 in 5 Americans make a continued effort to protect the environment in their daily lives.