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climate_change
(10/02/07) -

Climate Change Probably True, Say Americans

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – Many people in the United States believe global warming might be happening, according to a poll by Ipsos-Public Affairs and Stanford University released by the Associated Press. 84 per cent of respondents think the idea that the world’s temperature may have been going up slowly over the past 100 years is probably true.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – Many people in the United States believe global warming might be happening, according to a poll by Ipsos-Public Affairs and Stanford University released by the Associated Press. 84 per cent of respondents think the idea that the world’s temperature may have been going up slowly over the past 100 years is probably true.

In addition, 79 per cent of respondents believe the world will face a serious problem in the future if nothing is done to reduce global warming.

The term global warming refers to an increase of the Earth’s average temperature. Some theories say that climate change might be the result of human-generated carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Earlier this year, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report which states that global warming has been "very likely"—or 90 per cent certain—caused by humans burning fossil fuels.

In 1998, several countries agreed to the Kyoto Protocol, a proposed amendment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The agreement commits nations to reduce their emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. The U.S. has not ratified the treaty, which is due to expire in 2012.

On Sept. 27, U.S. state secretary Condoleezza Rice rebuffed criticism of the way the current American government has dealt with global warming, saying, "I want to stress that the United States takes climate change very seriously, for we are both a major economy and a major emitter. Climate change is a global problem and we are contributing to it, therefore we are prepared to expand our leadership to address the challenge."

Polling Data

You may have heard about the idea that the world’s temperature may have been going up slowly over the past 100 years. What is your personal opinion on this?

Think this has probably been happening

84%

Think it probably hasn’t been happening

14%

Not sure

2%

If nothing is done to reduce global warming in the future, how serious of a problem do you think it will be for the world?

Very serious

59%

Somewhat serious

20%

Not so serious

12%

Not serious at all

8%

Not sure

1%

Source: Ipsos-Public Affairs / Stanford University / Associated Press
Methodology: Telephone interviews with 1,001 American adults, conducted from Sept. 21 to Sept. 23, 2007. Margin of error is 3.1 per cent.