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New Scientific American Survey: Attitudes to Climate Change



An online survey about climate change, instigated by Scientific American, can be found on the Scientific American website . It's opinion, not science, but it makes interesting reading.

When I viewed it (7 Nov 10), 6,218 members of the public had responded. Three of the questions (shown below) were answered as indicated. I have rounded percentages to the nearest whole number for clarity.

Please visit the survey page and have a read.


QUESTIONS:

SHOULD CLIMATE SCIENTISTS DISCUSS SCIENTIFIC UNCERTAINTY IN MAINSTREAM FORUMS?
91% said Yes, it would help engage the citizenry,
6% said Maybe,
3% said No.

WHAT IS CAUSING CLIMATE CHANGE?
78% said Natural Processes,
32% said Solar Variation,
27% said Greenhouse Gases from human activity.

WHAT SHOULD WE DO ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE?
69% said Nothing, we cannot stop it;
26% said Switch to carbon-free energy sources and adapt to changes already underway,
15% said Use more technology (geoengineering, carbon capture and storage).

The survey also showed that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is held in low esteem. 84% of respondees believed it to have a political agenda.


The cost to the British economy of the 2008 Climate Change Act with its provision for a 80% cut in C02 emissions is estimated to be about 200 billion.

The Act requires future UK governments to stick to the emissions reduction targets regardless of International action on Climate Change.

What will happen if the five year budgets are not met, or when governments change?

The answer is that the new law will not punish ministers if they fail to hit the targets. It does, however, put the targets in statute, opening government policies to judicial review.



7 Nov 2010

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