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Racial gap on global climate change?

Racial gap on global climate change?

Harry Enten is a senior political writer and analyst for FiveThirtyEight, and writes on the demographics of Climate Change. The assumption in the press (provided by New York magazine’s Tim Murphy) that this is mostly pushed by white men (citing Al Gore, Bill McKibbin, and RFK Jr.) is negated by Enten:

Since 2007, Pew Research Center has asked people what areas, including global warming, should be a top priority for the president and Congress. Given the talk about the need for diversity in the global warming movement, you might expect that the people who say fighting global warming should a top priority would be overwhelmingly white. You’d be wrong.

Every time the question has been asked, a lower percentage of whites have said it should be a top priority than non-whites. In fact, the gap between whites and non-whites has widened. The share of non-whites viewing climate change as a top priority hasn’t changed much; that same share of whites, meanwhile, has dropped more than 10 percentage points.

Henten does quite a bit of analysis before concluding:

It seems clear from the polling that whites are more skeptical of the need for government intervention on global warming than non-whites. If the leaders of climate-change movement are overwhelmingly white, then they are not representative of the larger the slice of the public most sympathetic to their cause.


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