Public Resource
Environmental Polling Roundup - January 26th, 2024
David Gold, Environmental Polling Consortium

This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including a new update of Yale’s Climate Opinion Maps with estimates of climate attitudes down to local geographies, new polling on Americans’ top issue concerns, and new polling on the electricity grid and clean energy transition.



New Yale Climate Opinion Maps provide updated estimates of Americans’ climate attitudes down to the state, county, metro area, and congressional district levels [Website]

WSP + The Harris Poll
Americans are widely concerned about aging and unreliable electric grid infrastructure; grid reliability, along with health and jobs, is a key argument in favor of transitioning to clean energy [Release, including link to download full report]

The Economist + YouGov
More Democrats name climate change and the environment as their “most important issue” than any other [ToplineCrosstabs]



Climate and the environment continue to rank as Democrats’ “most important issue” this year. With the presidential contest officially underway, we are going to be seeing a lot of coverage (some rooted in actual data, some not) about the issues that “matter most” to voters this year and motivate them to turn out. At least on the Democratic side, climate change has consistently ranked among the very top issue concerns for several years. The Economist and YouGov find this week, for example, that Democrats are more likely to name climate change and the environment as their “most important issue” than any other issue.
Clean energy advocates should own the goal of grid reliability. Polls consistently show that Americans overwhelmingly want to invest in improved grid reliability but are unsure whether the clean energy transition will increase or decrease reliability. This creates room for clean energy advocates to move the public on the topic and persuade them that clean energy investment will create a stronger, more resilient grid. In newly released polling by consulting firm WSP and The Harris Poll, improved grid reliability ranks among the most compelling rationales for the clean energy transition along with improved health and jobs.



[Clean Energy] 78% of Americans say that renewable electricity can help the U.S. economy in the long run [WSP + The Harris Poll]
[Clean Energy] 74% of Americans say that they understand the need to transition U.S. energy from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources [WSP + The Harris Poll]
[Electric Grid + Extreme Weather] 78% of Americans are concerned about the safety of the grid, including vulnerability to extreme weather events [WSP + The Harris Poll]
[Climate Change + Energy] 67% of Americans are concerned about the climate impact of using fossil fuels to generate electricity [WSP + The Harris Poll]