Search below for resources covering the intersection of climate engagement, social science and data analytics.
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Key findings of a survey (phone and online) of US voters, with oversamples in key states include:
- Voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly support government investments in clean energy technologies in order to rebuild the economy (77%), create good jobs (76%), and eliminate the carbon emissions that cause climate change (75%).
- There's a widespread belief (75%) that investing in clean energy technologies will have economic benefits – including for "regular people."
- And also that by developing new clean technologies, we can replace many of the manufacturing and other blue-collar jobs that the country has lost over the last few decades (72%)
- Strong support for various approaches to boost and develop specific clean energy technologies such as clean steel and cement, clean jet fuels, and energy storage and transmission.
- Voters support investing $75 billion in clean energy tech RD&D as part of the upcoming infrastructure bill.
Minnesotans across the political spectrum strongly support transition to 100% clean energy sources, like wind and solar.
- 61% believe the transition to clean energy will benefit Minnesota’s economy, and 68%, (including 51% of Republican) believe it will have a positive impact on Minnesota’s environment.
- 66% of Minnesotans also support legislation to achieve a 100% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. Support strong across the state, with 68% of voters outside the seven-county metro area supporting elimination of greenhouse gas emissions, compared with 66% within the metro.
- 67% of respondents also said they’re very worried or somewhat worried about water pollution.
Community-based climate communications can increase awareness, facilitate interpersonal connections, and lead to climate actions. This resource studied how the Twin Ports Climate Conversations (TPCC) project in the upper Midwest has influenced local climate awareness and response. TPCC brought professional environmentalists and concerned citizens together in 2016 for a monthly climate change presentation and discussion event. TPCC highlighted a variety of climate change–oriented topics with a critical emphasis on how climate change is affecting or will affect the Western Lake Superior region and the implications of these impacts. A survey of participants in TPCC conversations found that 72% of them made professional contacts from participation and 45% had taken some kind of climate action as a result of participating in TPCC. Some prominent examples of actions included "presented on climate and extreme storms to Duluth Chapter of American Society of Civil Engineers," "incorporated the information into my classroom curricula," and "planting different trees."
In this webinar, the Lab team is joined by the Regulatory Assistance Project to explore recommendations from the new report Energy Infrastructure: Sources of Inequities and Policy Solutions for Improving Community Health and Wellbeing.
In addition to the report, participants also learn from advocates across the country fighting for an equitable clean energy future. Contributing speakers shared their reflections and lessons learned from a variety of perspectives on what it takes to achieve energy equity, including how they're financing low-income solar, how they're growing solar through state-level policy, and how to work in strong coalition.
Contributing speakers include: Donna Brutkoski, Communications Associate, Regulatory Assistance Project; Yesenia Rivera, Director of Energy Equity and Inclusion, Solar United Neighbors; and Jacqueline Hutchinson, Vice President of Operations, People’s Community Action Corporation.
Different parts of the country see various kinds of extreme weather as most concerning, perceptions which are largely in line with actual major disasters that have occurred in those regions. This report provides concern profiles for the 18 largest states, drawing on survey data from 2018 and 2019. Over half of Americans see such extreme weather events posting a high or moderate risk to their community in the coming decade, and two thirds see a climate link to US weather (though only a third think climate affects our weather "a lot").
Energy Infrastructure: Sources of Inequities and Policy Solutions for Improving Community Health and Wellbeing
In a new report produced with the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Synapse Energy Economics, RAP and Community Action Partnership take an in-depth look at the disparate impacts of electric and natural gas infrastructure on economic, social, and health outcomes — and consider how to ensure that a clean-energy future is a more equitable future.
The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and the Jefferson Center conducted a series of multi-day conversations in five rural Minnesota counties (plus one state-level convening) on local climate impacts. Through the use of the Jefferson Center’s “citizens jury” model, which brings together a roughly representative sample of the community to “study an issue in-depth and generate a shared community response, the organizers demonstrated the effectiveness of deliberative place-based conversations on persuading rural citizens (including climate skeptics) to care about climate change. Among the climate communications principles brought to bear are reducing social norms barriers when talking about climate, using of credible messengers in folksy extension climatologists, focusing on local weather impacts, and fostering a space for deliberation and “self-persuasion.” While effective in driving persistent attitude change, scale remains the obvious barrier.
Find reports and recordings for each conversation under the Counties tab. More coverage can be found here.