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Climate Change in the American Mind: March, 2016


6. Perceived Effectiveness of Action

6.1. Fewer than half of Americans think the American people can convince the U.S. Congress to pass ambitious legislation to reduce global warming.

Fewer than four in ten Americans (37%) think the American people can “definitely” or “probably” convince the U.S. Congress to pass legislation needed to reduce global warming. A similar number—38%—say they are not sure.

One in four (25%) say it is “definitely” or “probably” not possible.

2016_3_CCAM_Beliefs_Attitudes_6.1

6.2. About half of Americans think it is possible to prevent catastrophic harm from global warming, although one quarter or more say they don’t know. 

About half of Americans say it is “probably” or “definitely” possible to prevent catastrophic harm, due to global warming, to the following:

  • Future generations of people (51%)
  • Plant and animal species (50%)
  • People in the United States (49%)
  • The stability of Earth’s climate (46%)

However, fewer than half of Americans think it is possible to save people in poor countries from catastrophic harm (40%).

2016_3_CCAM_Beliefs_Attitudes_6.2