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global_warming
(06/28/09) -

Global Warming Happening, Say Americans

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – The vast majority of Americans are convinced that global warming is a reality, according to a poll by Sacred Heart University Polling Institute. 80.1 per cent of respondents say the phenomenon is happening.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – The vast majority of Americans are convinced that global warming is a reality, according to a poll by Sacred Heart University Polling Institute. 80.1 per cent of respondents say the phenomenon is happening.

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. In 2007, 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.

In October 2007, former U.S. vice-president Al Gore and the IPCC were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize "for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change."

The U.S. Congress is currently studying a bill—the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES)—that would cut carbon dioxide emissions by 17 per cent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 83 per cent by 2050.

On Jun. 23, U.S.president Barack Obama called for expediency in passing the bill, saying it will bring about a "transformation that will reduce our dependence on foreign oil and confront the carbon pollution that threatens our planet."

Polling Data

Are you convinced or unconvinced that global warming is happening today?

Completely / Mostly convinced

80.1%

Completely / Mostly unconvinced

17.5%

Not sure

3.4%

Source: Sacred Heart University Polling Institute
Methodology: Telephone interviews with 800 American adults, conducted from May 27 to Jun. 9, 2009. Margin of error is 3.5 per cent.