Global Warming’s Six Americas: June 2010

Report Summary

This report extends and updates an ongoing program of research analyzing Americans’ interpretations of and responses to climate change. This research segments the American public into six audiences that range along a spectrum of concern and issue engagement from the Alarmed, who are convinced of the reality and danger of climate change, and who are highly supportive of personal and political actions to mitigate the threat, to the Dismissive, who are equally convinced that climate change is not occurring and that no response should be made. These six groups are not very different demographically, but are dramatically different in their beliefs and actions, as well as their basic values and political orientations. The groups were first identified in a nationally representative survey conducted in the fall of 2008, and were re-assessed in the winter of 2009/2010. The current report is the third in the series; in it we provide new insights into the informational needs of the six groups, their emotional responses to the issue, and their support for climate policies currently under discussion in Congress.