RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—Ninety-seven percent of the world's scientists agree that climate change is an imminent problem and that it's caused by human actions. Yet, just 13 percent of Americans know that, and just 21 percent say they are "extremely sure" that climate change is a problem, according to a new poll by the Yale University Project on Climate Change Communication. In a story about the survey on National Public Radio, Ralph Cicerone, president of the conservative National Academies of Science (which has long agreed that climate change is a human-caused problem), attributed the public's uncertainty about the issue to cable TV shows and blogs that present the issue of climate change in a shroud of uncertainty, typically quoting opposing views from scientists and geologists who receive funding from the fossil fuel industries. The good news? "If you drill down a bit, the American public actually is not split when you ask them if they'd like to see a gradual transition from fossil fuels to clean energy. 'We find overwhelming bipartisan agreement about that," he said.
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Climate Change: Public Skeptical, Scientists Sure, NPR June 21, 20011
Public Support for Climate & Energy Policies in May 2011, Yale University Project on Climate Change Communication, June 13, 2011