Climate Change Risk Perception and Policy Preferences: The Role of Affect, Imagery, and Values

A national, representative survey of the U.S. public found that Americans have moderate climate change risk perceptions, strongly support a variety of national and international policies to mitigate climate change, and strongly oppose several carbon tax proposals. Drawing on the theoretical distinction between analytic and experiential decision-making, this study found that American risk perceptions and policy support are strongly influenced by experiential factors, including affect, imagery, and values, and demonstrates that public responses to climate change are influenced by both psychological and socio-cultural factors.