Conservative organizations spend as much as a billion dollars a year trying to convince Americans that climate change isn’t real, or if it is real, that it isn’t caused by humans. At one point, it seemed that their campaign was working.
In 2009, Pew found that belief in global warming had fallen to a low of 59 percent, down from 77 percent in 2007. And just 36 percent of those surveyed that year believed that climate change was being caused by humans, down from 47 percent in 2007. However since 2009, the number of believers has grown: Today 69 percent of those surveyed believe global warming is occurring, with 42 percent believing it is caused by humans.
But obviously, these figures are much lower than the 97 percent of climate scientists who believe in man-made global warming.
Across party lines there is a large divide, with Democrats mostly believing climate change is happening, and Republicans mostly disbelieving. Independents are split. But not by science. Independents’ views on man-made climate change change with the weather.
On hotter days, Independents become much, much more likely to claim they believe in man-made climate change:
[Climate & Society]
And with the number of hot days increasing due to climate change, the conservative billionaires are fighting an uphill battle to convince the public that climate change isn’t really occurring.
Which makes me wonder: Why don’t the conservative billionaires spending money trying to convince the public that climate change isn’t real instead spend their money developing technology to cool the planet? There is lots of technology in development that can do just that. For instance, carbon scrubbers that strip carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and store it as sodium carbonate.
After all, there is no better way to convince the world that climate change isn’t happening than preventing it from occurring.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Here comes the Pentagon's newest space plane
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- 3 horrific inaccuracies in Homeland's depiction of Islamabad
- Extreme haunted houses: Inside Halloween's most terrifying new trend
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Let us now praise Billy Joel
- The simple trick to making better decisions in every aspect of life
- How 1,000-year lifespans could remake the economy
- Everything you need to know about the voter ID controversy
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
Subscribe to the Week