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Recent focus groups underscore widespread enthusiasm for clean energy and urgency for electrification in New England. In the summer of 2023, Barr Foundation sponsored six focus groups with homeowners in each New England state and a final group with renters to gain further insights. They were particularly interested in discussing electrification, which has become a central part of climate strategies in the region. In alignment with the climate poll, respondents had an overwhelmingly positive perception of clean energy, but they also had questions about implementation, the costs of the energy transition, and how their own lives might change in the future. Many respondents viewed the clean energy transition as inevitable; they encouraged incentives and policies at the state and federal level that further clean energy development. A factor which gave participants pause was grid reliability; participants were concerned about the ability of the electric system to handle the transition of the power supply and the addition of many heat pumps and electric vehicles. Residents’ hesitation to adopt clean technologies is tied to costs, and most are unaware of incentives that are already available to them (or will be soon). People like heat pumps (once they know what they are). Rooftop solar is considered a luxury. Participants like the idea of clean heat standards+.
This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new polling on Americans' beliefs about recycling (among and other climate actions) and New Jersey residents' preferences for off-shore wind energy.
Declining support for offshore wind in New Jersey shows the dangers of misinformation about renewable energy. Just over half of New Jersey residents (54%) favor placing electricity-generating wind farms off the state’s coast while 40% oppose this action. In 2019, wind energy support stood at a much higher 76%, with just 15% opposed. Prior to that, support for offshore wind farms was even higher, ranging between 80% and 84% in polls taken from 2008 to 2011.
This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new polling on conservative groups' environmental ideas, extreme weather, messaging about climate justice, and western voters' conservation preferences.
Voters overwhelmingly want to protect the climate, clean energy, and environmental justice policies that conservative groups' “Project 2025” plan calls to cut. 75% of voters say that the next president should keep current protections in place for national parks and monuments, preserving these and other public lands from oil and gas drilling. 69% of voters say that the next president should prioritize environmental justice and take action to clean up pollution and improve public health in disadvantaged communities. 66% of voters say that the next president should protect the consumer tax credits and instant rebates that were included in the recently passed clean energy plan and which can lower energy costs for families by $1,800.
Americans are making the connection between natural disasters and climate change and support urgent action on environmental issues. 37% of Americans believed that the recent wildfires in Maui are primarily the result of climate change, while a similar share (36%) said these events just happen from time to time, and 21% said they weren’t sure. But under those topline numbers, there’s a big partisan divide. According to the poll, 63% of voters who supported President Biden in 2020 think that the recent wildfires in Maui are primarily the result of climate change, while the same share of Trump voters just think these things happen from time to time. Most Americans agree that the weather across the U.S. has gotten weirder — and in some cases, deadlier — over the past few years. According to an Ipsos poll conducted in April, two-thirds (67%) of respondents agreed that unusual weather for the season has gotten more frequent in their area than compared to 10 years ago, and a solid majority (60%) thought the weather has also become more intense.
This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new polling on the Inflation Reduction Act.
Since the IRA passed last year, Potential Energy has surveyed over 40,000 Americans on what they think about clean energy, carried out 22 focus groups, and measured the impact of 150 million ads about heat pumps and electric school buses. Here are the findings. Climate matters: the leading message to increase support for the Inflation Reduction Act and clean energy is one we call “Landmark Climate Achievement.” Community action is much easier to stoke than individual behavior change: the argument that new savings are available didn’t yet move masses of people, but the argument that we can now have cleaner schools and cleaner communities resonated highly. Opposition to clean energy is sometimes fierce, but very narrow: the great majority of the opposition sits with only 13% of people, but everyone else wants clean energy. “My town” and “my state” matter more than “my country”: enthusiasm around patriotism-centric ideas like “We Will Never Run out of America” and “America Powers America” was blunted by the hard truth that people can see many Americas.
Poll: A Year After the Passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, Key Climate Provisions of the Law Enjoy Strong Support Across the Electorate
The Inflation Reduction Act’s core climate and clean energy provisions remain popular. 80% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s standards to ensure that businesses receiving government clean energy tax credits pay their workers a fair wage and make their goods in America. 73% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s provision to ramp up production of American-made clean energy technologies to strengthen our energy supply chains and manufacturing industries. 73% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s penalties for oil and gas companies that are found to have pumped out excess methane gas pollution into the air. 71% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s investments to reduce pollution and improve public health in disadvantaged communities that are disproportionately impacted by climate change. 70% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s provision of up to $14,000 in rebates on home energy efficiency investments per household that save families money and help reduce reliance on fossil fuels. 69% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act’s tax credits for businesses that produce clean electricity such as solar and wind power, electric vehicles, and other new clean energy technologies.