Most Americans agree: We have to solve the climate crisis. According to Quinnipiac University researchers, 63 percent of American voters believe the US should be doing more to address climate change. At a time when we can’t agree on much, people across party lines want our legislators to work on resolving the climate crisis now. We need to be persistent in telling legislators we want to transition from fossil fuels.
We care about climate
In a March 2018 survey, Yale and George Mason University researchers discovered six in ten Americans say global warming is personally important to them. Seventy-seven percent of millennials believe we should work to stop or slow climate change. Many of your neighbors, colleagues, friends–even people you disagree with on almost everything else–care about climate.
We know climate change affects us
When Americans take something personally, they want elected officials to respond. We know climate change is already affecting our weather and our everyday lives. According to the Yale and George Mason study, six in 10 Americans believe climate change is affecting weather in the United States.
We want clean energy
Even those who aren’t very concerned about climate change agree we should use clean energy rather than fossil fuels. Seven out of ten Americans support using renewables over oil, coal, and natural gas, according to an April 2018 Gallup poll.
People who are not worried about climate change still support the clean energy and sustainability economy because it means over 4 million American jobs, while substantially cutting emissions.
We want energy efficient cars
We want more efficient cars that save fuel costs and pollute less. Under the Obama Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced guidelines that would improve average fuel efficiency to 54.5 miles per gallon for model year 2017—2025 vehicles.
These standards would have prevented approximately 6 billion metric tons of carbon pollution from entering the atmosphere – as much as 1,746 coal-fired power plants emit in a year. When the new administration’s EPA announced it would replace standards with much less ambitious targets, 65 percent of Americans opposed the move and supported keeping the stronger standards in place, according to a 2018 Global Strategy Group study.
We support the Paris agreement
The Paris Agreement is the world’s first global agreement to combat climate change. Nearly six in 10 Americans opposed the US leaving the agreement, according to a June 2017 Washington Post– ABC News poll. So did over 2,700 business, education, and political leaders.
Start talking about it
One reason money from fossil fuel interests can influence politicians in the face of overwhelming public opinion is because not enough of us are talking about the climate crisis to motivate them.
Only 35 percent of Americans talk about climate change with their friends and family often or occasionally. Twelve percent of Americans say they don’t talk about climate because their family and friends already agree. Eleven percent say they don’t know enough to talk about it.
We need to start talking about climate the same way we talk about other issues like the economy and national security if we want politicians to listen. Support the ones that do listen to send a clear message to the rest: This matters to all of us.
What you can do
Join a local chapter of Climate Reality Project. Or Google climate action groups to find an organization that appeals to you.
Call, write, text or tweet your elected officials. They need to know people from all political parties care deeply about our climate. Let them know climate must be the issue they respond to if they want to stay in office. Refuse to let politicians sacrifice our future and our world, just so fossil fuel companies can profit.
Start talking to people about climate. Let them know climate matters to you. Tell them we have broad popular support to make legislators listen. We are the majority. It’s time to speak up.
This is an urgent situation. Do in now.