Search below for resources covering the intersection of climate engagement, social science and data analytics.


Research & Articles

Most Americans want more renewable energy, but support has dipped. Interest in electric vehicles has also declined. The shares who favor expanding solar and wind power farms are down 12 percentage points and 11 points, respectively, since 2020, driven by sharp drops in support among Republicans. Today, 29% of Americans say they would consider an EV for their next purchase, down from 38% in 2023. Still, a majority of Americans (63%) support the goal of the U.S. taking steps to become carbon neutral by 2050. When asked which is the greater priority, far more Americans continue to say the country should focus on developing renewable energy than fossil fuel sources (65% vs. 34%). A fairly modest share of U.S. adults (25%) say it’s extremely or very important to them personally to limit their own “carbon footprint.”

Climate Change in the American Mind: Politics & Policy, Spring 2024

Anthony Leiserowitz, Edward Maibach, Seth Rosenthal et al. Yale University and George Mason University
Research & Articles

Steady majorities of voters say that clean energy and global warming should be high priorities for the President and Congress, and voters overwhelmingly prefer pro-climate candidates over candidates who oppose climate action. By a greater than four-to-one margin, voters would prefer to vote for a candidate for public office who supports action on global warming (62%) over a candidate who opposes action on global warming (15%). 74% of voters support the Inflation Reduction Act after reading a brief description of it. 77% of voters support providing tax rebates to people who purchase energy-efficient vehicles or solar panels. 74% of voters support tax credits or rebates to encourage people to buy electric appliances, such as heat pumps and induction stoves, that run on electricity instead of oil or gas. 66% of voters support transitioning the U.S. economy from fossil fuels to 100% clean energy by 2050. 80% of voters support strengthening enforcement of industrial pollution limits in low-income communities and communities of color that are disproportionately impacted by air and water pollution. 65% of voters support building solar farms in their local area. 58% of voters support building wind farms in their local area.

Research & Articles

Most Americans say that climate change will be an important factor in their vote for president, as majorities say that it’s “very important” for the next president to expand U.S. clean energy and enforce clean air and water rules. Most support solar and wind energy projects in their own communities. 78% of Americans recognize that climate change is happening. 65% of Americans say that climate change policy will be an important factor in their vote for president this year. 56% of Americans say that it’s “extremely” or “very” important for the next president to enforce strict clean air and water regulations. 53% of Americans say that it’s “extremely” or “very” important for the next president to expand the U.S. clean energy industry. 62% of Americans say that corporations and industry have “a great deal” or “a lot” of responsibility for addressing climate change. 59% of Americans say that the U.S. federal government has “a great deal” or “a lot” of responsibility for addressing climate change. 64% of Americans support a solar panel field being built in their community. 60% of Americans support wind turbines being built in their community.

Community Ownership of Solar with Cleveland Owns

Jonathan Welle, Cleveland Owns & The Climate Advocacy Lab
Tips & How-Tos

In Cleveland, OH, the nonprofit Cleveland Owns is incubating the state's first community-owned solar developer, Cleveland Solar Cooperative, which was the subject of a recent case study funded by the Climate Advocacy Lab. 

On the call, organizers shared lessons learned, their motivations to keep at this work, and best practices for groups around the country working to build community-owned solar arrays. The insights shared in this webinar will inform advocates working to start community-owned solar projects, provide practical tips for groups building relationships with the goal of taking action for climate justice, and introduce attendees to a national network of organizations that support projects like this around the country.

Research & Articles

Voters are worried that climate change will increase the cost of living, but have hope that the expansion of renewables will bring down energy costs. 69% of all likely voters believe that climate change effects will increase costs for consumers. 70% of Americans believe that expanding renewable energy production, like wind and solar power, will bring energy costs down (including 88% of Democrats and 53% of Republicans).

Poll: Nonmetropolitan Nebraskans’ Opinions about Water, Climate, and Energy

Rebecca Vogt et al., University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
Research & Articles

Analysis of the Nebraska Rural poll revealed interesting insights about climate, energy, and water issues:

A Case Study on the Founding of the Cleveland Solar Cooperative

Will Cuneo, Jonathan Welle, Cleveland Owns
Tips & How-Tos

In June 2019, the nonprofit Cleveland Owns convened The Lakewood Community Solar Fellowship, a free leadership development program focused on bringing resident-owned community solar to Lakewood, Ohio. A group of 7 residents took part, meeting for a few hours every Sunday in the basement of the local public library. The goal? Form a solar cooperative to fight climate change and build toward climate justice.

When the Fellowship started, most of these residents were strangers, but together they would go on to form the Cleveland Solar Cooperative (CSC), Ohio’s first community-owned cooperative solar developer. How did this happen?

This case study details how Cleveland Owns helped convene the Cleveland Solar Cooperative (CSC), Ohio's first community-owned cooperative solar developer. It explores how Cleveland Owns developed the foundation for energy democracy efforts in their city; the key moments, challenges, and successes they and allies faced as they formed the cooperative; and an offering of tools and resources for other communities seeking to replicate their model.

Among these resources and insights are:

  • An account of Cleveland Owns' organizing principles and group norms
  • An honest reflection of challenges they faced, such as developing mutual trust and the technical expertise necessary to navigate the local energy market
  • The rationale behind the cooperative business model underlying the CSC
  • The CSC's process of developing bylaws, governance structures, and technical infrastructure for themselves
  • Their ethos of self-assessment that drives their evolution as a collective
  • A tool kit of organizing materials and resources on energy democracy and solar development

Home solar panel adoption continues to rise in the U.S.

Rebecca Leppert and Brian Kennedy. Pew Research Center
Research & Articles

Residential solar has continued to grow rapidly in recent years, despite COVID-19-related supply chain issues, import restrictions and other obstacles. Residential solar power installations rose by 34% from 2.9 gigawatts in 2020 to 3.9 gigawatts in 2021. In the second quarter of 2022, residential solar set its 5th consecutive quarterly growth record. 8% of U.S. homeowners said they have already installed solar panels and an additional 39% have given serious thought to it in the past year. The share of homeowners who say they have installed solar panels is up from 6% in a 2019 survey and 4% in 2016. When asked about possible reasons for installing solar panels, almost all homeowners who have installed them or considered doing so (92%) see saving money on bills as a reason. Democrats and Republicans who have installed or considered installing home solar panels are about equally likely to say this. Most homeowners who said in January that they’ve installed or seriously considered installing solar panels at home said helping the environment was a motivation for doing so (81%). 59% said they did so because it would be better for their health and their family’s health. Another 64% cited solar investment tax credits as a reason. (That survey was conducted before the 30% federal tax credit became law in August 2022.)

Environmental Polling Roundup - September 9th, 2022

David Gold, Environmental Polling Consortium
Research & Articles

This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new polling on the Inflation Reduction Act, attitudes toward the country’s major domestic energy sources, and a new paper on the behaviors and perceptions that correlate the most strongly with changes in climate attitudes.

Research & Articles

Wind and solar remain Americans’ most favored energy sources, while support for nuclear energy continues to trend steadily upward. Americans are far less likely to blame gas for pollution and climate change than other fossil fuels. 77% of Americans say the United States should be spending more money over the next few years on the research and development of wind and solar energy. 76% of Americans recognize that oil contributes to unhealthy air pollution and climate change. 73% of Americans recognize that coal contributes to unhealthy air pollution and climate change.