81% of Americans support increased use of domestic energy resources
[img_assist|nid=929|title=Americans support use of domestic energy|desc=|link=popup|url=http://www.americansolutions.com/General/?Page|align=right|width=300|height=187]A just released poll, carried out by The Polling Company, Inc. for American Solutions for Winning The Future, from May 29 – June 1, 2008, indicates clearly that the vast majority of American adults want the Congress to drop the climate change issue and focus instead on the use and development of domestic energy resources, including coal. By large margins, Americans want Congress focused on the costs of energy.
Poll findings also indicated that while American adults are concerned about the potential impacts of climate change, they are far more concerned about the potential impacts of limited energy supplies, the need for domestic energy security, and rapidly rising energy costs.
Poll results indicated that,
[img_assist|nid=930|title=Energy security trumps climate|desc=|link=popup|align=left|width=300|height=270]By a margin of more than two-to-one, Americans prioritized energy security over climate change as the more pressing issue.
Even self-identified "liberals" described energy security as a more pressing concern for the country than global climate change (49% vs. 40%). Self-identified "conservatives" and "moderates" were also more concerned about energy security than global warming (73% and 64% respectively).
Not surprisingly, when the rising cost of gasoline and energy was added to the discussion, pollsters found that American adults were increasingly adamant that Congress should cease pushing for climate change legislation and focus their energies on reducing the cost of energy, while ensuring the discovery and development of domestic energy resources. 71% of respondents urged Congress to increase domestic energy supplies and lower the cost of electricity and gas. Only 18% of respondents wanted Congress to keep their focus on addressing climate change despite the impacts that focus might have on energy supplies and costs.
Members of visible minority and low income groups — statistically the people most likely to suffer the impacts of increased energy costs — as well as those in the 18-24 age range and those living in North Central and North East areas showed the strongest reactions to the question of where Congress should focus its legislative energies.
[img_assist|nid=931|title=Focus on energy or climate?|desc=|link=popup|align=right|width=300|height=153]
As polsters moved through their questions, they found that,
- An amazing four-to-one ratio of respondents (81% – 16%) felt that America should target the development of its “own domestic energy reserves, including the oil and coal it already has here in the United States” to “combat the rising cost of energy and reduce dependence on foreign energy sources” 81%-16%).
- By a minimum margin of over 2-to-1, Americans believed that we should increase our development activities and our use of our domestic coal resources (using both traditional and newer clean coal technologies). Majorities in every demographic group, except 18-24 year olds, as well as majorites in all political parties and political ideologies all agreed with this concept.
- At least 6 of every ten respondents questioned believed that we should build clean coal plants "as rapidly as possible."
- By a margin of at least 3-to1, Americans believd that a measured plan to develop domestic energy resources — including clean coal and oil — "even if it means drilling off of our costs and in Alaska" was a superior option to using legal means (such as suing OPEC) to increase energy supplies.
The very clear picture produced by the answers of American adults to this group of questions was that although climate change may be an ongoing concern for many American adults, it does not hold a candle to their concern over the need for abundant, affordable, and clean domestic energy supplies. If the results of this survey are considered, the average American adult clearly sees the Congressional focus on climate change as misguided and believes that they need to address the issue of energy security, supplies, and costs.
You can read the specific poll findings in this pdf document on the American Solutions website.