Climate change and clean energy important to swing voters in the US

16 October 2012

NEW YORK: Recent public surveys in the US show that Americans are increasingly concerned about climate change, suggesting that a greater focus on the subject could be a winning ticket for presidential candidates in the US election race.

Climate survey

One survey which was carried out in March 2012 by Yale and George Mason University, found that out of those surveyed, 82% of Democrats, 68% of independents and 44% Republicans believe that the US should undertake medium or large-scale efforts to combat climate change. In the same study it was revealed that 72% Democrats and 66% of independents agree that global warming would harm future generations.

Americans want clean energy

In May 2012, a survey of likely voters by Harstad Strategic Research’s Andrew Maxfield found that a candidate who focused on clean energy fared better than those who supported a wide range of energy options, including fossil fuels.

An even more recent poll, conducted in September 2012 by Yale and George Mason University, showed similar results. Over 60% of ‘undecided voters’ agree that climate change is happening and caused by humans – but more importantly, 61% say that it is also a very important issue in determining who they will vote for.

Serious debate

Evan Juska, Head of US Policy, The Climate Group, said: “The extreme weather we’ve experienced here in the US these past couple years has some voters taking climate change more seriously. They’re realizing that it isn’t just an ideological issue, like they’ve heard, but that it affects real people in the form of crop failures, natural disasters, and health impacts. If the concern lasts and grows, it could be the catalyst for a serious debate about climate change in the US in the near future.”

If you want the 2012 US election candidates to talk more about climate change and clean energy, you may be interested in reading our American Clean Revolution report, sharing our infographic, or showing support for clean energy on social media with our fun election app.

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