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A record number of Americans now believe in climate change, according to a long-running survey conducted annually by the University of Michigan and Muhlenberg College since 2008.
Nearly three-quarters – 73 percent – believe that there is substantial evidence when it comes to global warming. In addition, 60 percent accept that influence has plays at least some role in climate change.
This is the highest number since the survey began. Just 15 percent of respondents – who were polled in May, the hottest during all 124 years of record keeping – do not believe in climate change at all.
Chris Borick, Director of the Muhlenberg College Institute of Public Opinion, told The Guardian: “There’s lots of evidence that contemporary weather is a contributing factor to belief in climate change.
“But there are other factors. People are telling us they are experiencing a climate that isn’t what they remember in the past and the evidence itself, such as declining polar ice, is having an effect. Americans are moving to a lot more confident space on this.”
Researchers found that political affiliation affects opinion around climate change, with only 50 percent of Republicans accepting that there is evidence of it.
A significantly larger 90 percent of Democrats accept there’s evidence.
According to the research: “The divide between Democrats and Republicans on the existence of anthropogenic induced global warming is also at record levels with 78 percent of Democrats now holding the view that humans are at least partially responsible for warming on the planet compared to only 35 percent of Republicans.”