Climate Change in the American Mind – March 2018

A nationally representative survey explores the upwards trends in Americans’ concern about climate change. 


1 in 5 Americans are very worried about global warming and substantial evidence indicates Americans believe they have personally been affected by climate change. The findings from the report outline a growing trend toward increased climate awareness.


  • 6 in 10 Americans think global warming is affecting weather in the United States, and 3 in 10 think weather is being affected “a lot”.
  • 62% of Americans say they are at least “somewhat worried” about global warming. 21% are “very worried” about it – nearly twice the proportion that was “very worried” in March 2015.
  • 49% of American’s say humans could reduce global warming, but it’s unclear at this point whether we will do what is necessary, and about 22% say we won’t reduce global warming because people are unwilling to change their behavior.
  • 4 in 10 Americans say they have personally experienced the effects of global warming, an increase of 10% points since March 2015.
  • Half of Americans understand that global warming is mostly human-caused. Whereas 28% say it is due mostly to natural changes in the environment.
  • Large majorities of Americans think of global warming as an environmental (74%), scientific (68%), agricultural (62%), severe weather (61%), health (60%), political (58%), and/or economic issue (57%). Fewer think it is a moral (41%), social justice (29%), poverty (28%), national security (25%), and/or religious issue (13%).


Download the report


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