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Thread: Poll Finds Majority See Threat in Global Warming

  1. -1
    ckb2001's Avatar
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    Poll Finds Majority See Threat in Global Warming

    Forgetting about the science for a moment (man, it hurts to even say that..), this is an interesting poll of how Americans see the threat of global warming AND what they are willing to sacrifice for doing something about it:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/26/wa...ollcnd.html?hp

    "Americans in large bipartisan numbers say the heating of the earth’s atmosphere is having serious effects on the environment now or will soon and think that it is necessary to take immediate steps to reduce its effects, the latest New York Times/CBS News poll finds."

    Ninety percent of Democrats, 80 percent of independents and 60 percent of Republicans said immediate action was required to curb the warming of the atmosphere and deal with its effects on the global climate. Nineteen percent said it was not necessary to act now, and 1 percent said no steps were needed.

    Several recent international reports have concluded with near certainty that human activities are the main cause of global warming since 1950. The poll found that 84 percent of Americans see human activity as at least contributing to warming.

    The poll also found that Americans want the United States to support conservation and to be a global leader in addressing environmental problems and developing alternative energy sources to reduce reliance on fossil fuels like oil and coal.

    But when it comes to specific steps to foster conservation or produce more energy, the public is deeply torn, the poll found. Respondents said they would support higher gasoline prices to reduce dependence on foreign oil but would oppose higher prices to combat global warming.

    By large margins, respondents opposed an increase in pump prices of $2 a gallon, or even $1, to deal with environmental and energy-supply concerns. Three-quarters said they would be willing to pay more for electricity generated by renewable sources like solar or wind energy.

    The negative view of new gasoline taxes may reflect the wide expectation that pump prices will continue to increase regardless of government action. More than 80 percent foresee higher gasoline prices in coming months, with many citing the Iraq war as a primary cause. Most respondents said they did not expect that any withdrawal of American troops from Iraq would cause prices to fall.

    ..

    Respondents expressed little confidence in President Bush’s handling of environmental or energy issues, and a majority of those polled, including many Republicans, said Democrats were more likely than Republicans to protect the environment and foster energy independence.

    One-third approved Mr. Bush’s handling of the environment and 27 percent approved his approach to energy questions. Democrats have criticized Mr. Bush’s policies on energy and the environment almost from the day he took office. Those policies have also cost him some Republican support, the poll showed.

    “I think the Republicans have slashed the funds for cleanup of the environment, and if it comes down to whether or not it will cost big business, forget about the cleanup,” said Ron Gellerman, 65, a respondent from Maple Grove, Minn., who said he was a Republican.

    “The Democrats are more willing to spend dollars on pure research,” Mr. Gellerman added in a follow-up interview after the poll was completed. “They’re open to alternative sources of energy, like wind. We could save more energy by increasing the efficiency of our electrical system and our automobiles. And the Democrats would be more willing to look at that sort of thing because they’re not so beholden to Big Oil.”

    Many governors, members of Congress and presidential hopefuls from both parties have been more outspoken than Mr. Bush on the need to take immediate steps to combat global warming and reduce oil imports.

    Private citizens tend to agree with them, the poll found, but they are also somewhat bewildered about the issues. Asked whether discussions of energy and the environment by political leaders were helpful or confusing, nearly three-quarters said the details were confusing.

    Asked how they would respond to a presidential candidate who said all Americans would have to pay more for fuel or use less of it to protect the environment, one-third said they would be more likely to vote for that person and 15 percent said they would be less likely. Almost half said it would make no difference.

    Americans broadly support using renewable energy sources like solar and wind power and say fueling vehicles with ethanol, which is now made largely from corn, is a good idea, the survey found."
    --------------------------

    well, read on.. I can't post the whole article.

    Anyway, here's the link to the entire poll:
    http://graphics8.nytimes.com/package...70424_poll.pdf
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    branflakecereal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckb2001 View Post
    Forgetting about the science for a moment (man, it hurts to even say that..), this is an interesting poll of how Americans see the threat of global warming AND what they are willing to sacrifice for doing something about it:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/26/wa...ollcnd.html?hp

    "Americans in large bipartisan numbers say the heating of the earth’s atmosphere is having serious effects on the environment now or will soon and think that it is necessary to take immediate steps to reduce its effects, the latest New York Times/CBS News poll finds."

    Ninety percent of Democrats, 80 percent of independents and 60 percent of Republicans said immediate action was required to curb the warming of the atmosphere and deal with its effects on the global climate. Nineteen percent said it was not necessary to act now, and 1 percent said no steps were needed.

    Several recent international reports have concluded with near certainty that human activities are the main cause of global warming since 1950. The poll found that 84 percent of Americans see human activity as at least contributing to warming.

    The poll also found that Americans want the United States to support conservation and to be a global leader in addressing environmental problems and developing alternative energy sources to reduce reliance on fossil fuels like oil and coal.

    But when it comes to specific steps to foster conservation or produce more energy, the public is deeply torn, the poll found. Respondents said they would support higher gasoline prices to reduce dependence on foreign oil but would oppose higher prices to combat global warming.

    By large margins, respondents opposed an increase in pump prices of $2 a gallon, or even $1, to deal with environmental and energy-supply concerns. Three-quarters said they would be willing to pay more for electricity generated by renewable sources like solar or wind energy.

    The negative view of new gasoline taxes may reflect the wide expectation that pump prices will continue to increase regardless of government action. More than 80 percent foresee higher gasoline prices in coming months, with many citing the Iraq war as a primary cause. Most respondents said they did not expect that any withdrawal of American troops from Iraq would cause prices to fall.

    ..

    Respondents expressed little confidence in President Bush’s handling of environmental or energy issues, and a majority of those polled, including many Republicans, said Democrats were more likely than Republicans to protect the environment and foster energy independence.

    One-third approved Mr. Bush’s handling of the environment and 27 percent approved his approach to energy questions. Democrats have criticized Mr. Bush’s policies on energy and the environment almost from the day he took office. Those policies have also cost him some Republican support, the poll showed.

    “I think the Republicans have slashed the funds for cleanup of the environment, and if it comes down to whether or not it will cost big business, forget about the cleanup,” said Ron Gellerman, 65, a respondent from Maple Grove, Minn., who said he was a Republican.

    “The Democrats are more willing to spend dollars on pure research,” Mr. Gellerman added in a follow-up interview after the poll was completed. “They’re open to alternative sources of energy, like wind. We could save more energy by increasing the efficiency of our electrical system and our automobiles. And the Democrats would be more willing to look at that sort of thing because they’re not so beholden to Big Oil.”

    Many governors, members of Congress and presidential hopefuls from both parties have been more outspoken than Mr. Bush on the need to take immediate steps to combat global warming and reduce oil imports.

    Private citizens tend to agree with them, the poll found, but they are also somewhat bewildered about the issues. Asked whether discussions of energy and the environment by political leaders were helpful or confusing, nearly three-quarters said the details were confusing.

    Asked how they would respond to a presidential candidate who said all Americans would have to pay more for fuel or use less of it to protect the environment, one-third said they would be more likely to vote for that person and 15 percent said they would be less likely. Almost half said it would make no difference.

    Americans broadly support using renewable energy sources like solar and wind power and say fueling vehicles with ethanol, which is now made largely from corn, is a good idea, the survey found."
    --------------------------

    well, read on.. I can't post the whole article.

    Anyway, here's the link to the entire poll:
    http://graphics8.nytimes.com/package...70424_poll.pdf
    I'd like to see where they got their polling samples from before I gave this any credibility. You can find more than one poster in this forum alone, if I'm not mistaken, that belongs in that one percent.
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    The Confessor's Avatar
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    I would be of that 1%
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    ckb2001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by branflakecereal View Post
    I'd like to see where they got their polling samples from before I gave this any credibility. You can find more than one poster in this forum alone, if I'm not mistaken, that belongs in that one percent.
    That's a fair question. This is what the link itself says (on the second page):

    QUOTE:
    "The nationwide telephone poll was conducted Friday to Tuesday with 1,052 adults. The margin-of-sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points."
    --------------

    So, it looks quite standard just based on that.
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    ckb2001's Avatar
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    branflakecereal, here's more detailed information on how the poll was conducted from CBS's site (should answer your question):
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2001/...in299401.shtml

    And here's CBS's version of the story:
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/...n2731709.shtml
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  6. -6
    Perfect23's Avatar
    I wish people understood this

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    Global Warming is all natural in about 20 years we we'll be going through a cold stage it's an all natural process
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect23 View Post
    Global Warming is all natural in about 20 years we we'll be going through a cold stage it's an all natural process
    We have before:

    "The Cooling World" - by Peter Gwynne

    April 28, 1975 Newsweek
    The central fact is that after three quarters of a century of extraordinarily mild conditions, the earth's climate seems to be cooling down. Meteorologists disagree about the cause and extent of the cooling trend, as well as over its specific impact on local weather conditions. But they are almost unanimous in the view that the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century
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    ckb2001's Avatar
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    Ahh.. yeah I forgot, there are new faces here. Anyway, without going into as much detail as I went into in previous threads, here are a few things to note.

    First, for ELEPHANT, the scientific stance on global cooling thing was highly misrepresented by that Newsweek article. The National Academy of Sciences in 1975 stated this:

    QUOTE:
    "The climates of the earth have always been changing, and they will doubtless continue to do so in the future. How large these future changes will be, and where and how rapidly they will occur, we do not know.."
    ------------------

    So, there was no comparable scientific basis for global cooling as there is today for global warming. Also, climate models today can account for that global cooling (an essential test of any such model), so that's not a source of serious contention among climate researchers.


    And as far as the global warming thing being natural, well, the 2007 IPCC report states that we know to at least 90% certainty average global temperatures will rise between 1.8-4 degrees Celsius in the next century, AND we are at least 90% certain humans are contributing a net warming effect on the climate.

    In any case, some here pointed out there are scientists who don't agree with this, and I went into detail about exactly what the scientific basis for their counter-arguments are.

    Most compelling is this article in the journal Science:
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/conten.../306/5702/1686

    It shows that while there may be scientists that aren't exactly certain whether the IPCC report's conclusion are accurate, NONE of those scientists have actually published scientific journal articles that present findings disputing the conclusions of the IPCC report.

    Thus, the best predictions science can make at this moment are those of the 2007 IPCC report and the two important ones (predicted rise in average global temperatures and to what degree humans are responsible for a net warming) are known with greater than 90% certainty.

    Also, shortly after the 2007 IPCC report came out, an article came out showing that the effects of CO2 on the environment are consistent over the last 420 million years:
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0328155540.htm

    So, while CO2 increases tend to amplify warming trends (they often don't start it historically), their effect is consistent.

    Anyway, if any extra details are needed I can go into that, but I was hoping we wouldn't have to rehash the science behind global warming and just focus on how non-scientists (including government leaders) are responding. But, if the thread goes into the science, well I'll explain stuff again if necessary.
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    DonShula84's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect23 View Post
    Global Warming is all natural in about 20 years we we'll be going through a cold stage it's an all natural process
    Based on your extensive background in science and the specific area of warming in the atmosphere I have no reason to doubt you. Count me in the 1% now.


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    Blitz's Avatar
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    Viewing global warming purely from a political standpoint, it's quite obvious that this is the issue that the Democrats ought to use in 2008 to help them out in the interior west (i.e., Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico & Montana). I predict that a strong environmentalist such as Al Gore would be very competitive in all five of those states, forcing the Republicans to downsize their operations in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan in order to defend their formerly strong hold on the interior west. Democrats need to penetrate either the interior west or in the South, preferably both, in order to win. Only Gore offers them an opportunity to do so.
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