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This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new polling on conservation, climate, and energy issues in Western states + new national polling on the Inflation Reduction Act + state-level polling in Minnesota about the state’s new clean energy bill and other environmental priorities.
Residents of US western states continue to prioritize conservation of the land, water, wildlife, and their ability to enjoy the outdoors. People in New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho were surveyed for this poll. 97% of westerners believe the rising cost of living is a serious issue, and 89% believe the price of gasoline is a serious issue. There has been a 28-point increase since 2016 in the share of westerners who say that people moving to their state is a serious problem (from 47% to 75%). 50% of westerns say that the current shortage of water in the west is a serious crisis. The plurality of westerners (38%) say that businesses use the most water in their state, as compared to farmers and ranchers (34%) and households (25%).
Just five policies across the economy can dramatically cut state greenhouse gas emissions. These include clean electricity standards; zero-emission vehicle standards; clean building equipment standards; industrial efficiency and emissions standards; and standards for methane detection, capture, and destruction. This report evaluates emissions trajectories and policy impacts for six states: Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. These states have widely varying emissions profiles. For example, Louisiana’s emissions are dominated by the industrial sector, while in Michigan, the building sector is a significant contributor. In New Mexico, home to significant oil and gas extraction, methane is a major source of GHG emissions.
This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new national polling on climate change, the Inflation Reduction Act, and public transportation + new state-level polling on climate and environmental policies in New Mexico.
New Mexico voters widely support proposals to shift the state toward clean energy, reduce methane pollution, and protect safe drinking water. 89% of New Mexico voters support a proposal to provide funding to help rural and tribal communities repair systems that ensure safe drinking water. 70% of New Mexico voters support the state’s new requirements for the oil and gas industry to use technologies that limit methane emissions and other pollution. 58% of New Mexico voters support proposed state legislation that would make New Mexico a national leader in clean energy production and require that the state cut climate pollution by half by 2030 and reach net-zero by 2050.
Overwhelming majorities of voters in western states support pro-conservation policies. Wildfires and droughts are especially salient concerns throughout the region. The 2022 poll surveyed registered voters in eight western states: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. Majorities now say that inadequate water supplies (70%, up 30 points since 2011), the loss of natural areas (55%, +19 since 2011), the loss of habitat for fish and wildlife (55%, +17 since 2011), pollution of rivers, lakes, and streams (54%, +12 since 2011), and climate change (52%, +25 since 2011) are “extremely” or “very” serious problems in their state. Western voters are most acutely concerned about droughts and reduced snowpack (59% “very” concerned) and more frequent and severe wildfires (52% “very” concerned). Nearly three-quarters of western voters (74%) say that drought is an “extremely” or “very” serious problem in their state, an increase of 22 points since 2016. For wildfires, 91% say that “uncontrollable wildfires that threaten homes and property” are a serious problem in their state - an increase of 14 points since 2016.
This post includes climate and environment headlines, data points, and key takeaways from recent public polls - including new national polling on pollution in the manufacturing sector, investments in clean energy jobs and development, plastic pollution, and climate as a legislative priority + a major new report on environmental attitudes in western states.
Under-resourced communities face a disproportionate share of societal burdens and lack access to many of the benefits other communities enjoy. Participation in the solar economy can help ease these burdens and provide low-and middle-income households with economic relief.