Christian Science Monitor - Climate change is still very much a political issue, finds a new poll by the Pew Research Center. But the seeds of consensus are present, too – and they may get to the heart of what Americans value.
The poll found that people's political orientations have a substantial influence on their perceptions of climate issues. Liberal Democrats express the most trust in climate scientists and are most likely to say that human or political action can prevent climate catastrophe. Conservative Republicans tend to be far more skeptical toward climate scientists, and tend to say that individual acts can make only a limited difference.
"The most important thing I've learned ... is that facts are not enough," Katharine Hayhoe, associate professor of political science at Texas Tech University and the co-author of "A Climate for Change: Global Warming Facts for Faith-Based Decisions," tells The Christian Science Monitor in a phone interview. "We need to connect to people's hearts," she says.
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