A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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New survey: Nearly one third in US say “climate change a total hoax”

How the landscape is shifting.  If we give people the right question instead of the usual loaded surveys, they surprise us. Here’s an opinion poll with an outrageously skeptical option: “climate change is a total hoax”.

Bloomberg Politics National Poll

31% of US voters surveyed said they strongly or mostly agreed.

See what happens when you ask a good question?


I’m going to read stances some candidates have taken on key issues. For each, please tell me if you strongly agree, mostly agree, mostly disagree, or strongly disagree. (Read list. Rotate.)

Total Agree Total Disagree Strongly Agree Mostly agree Mostly Disagree Strongly Disagree  Not sure Climate change is a total hoax   31    65  17  14   20 45 4


In March 2015 a Gallup poll on Climate Change suggested that 24% of the US population worried “Not at all”. I called these the “implacable skeptics”. I’d argue now that the implacable skeptic group stands at 31% who agree that it is a “total hoax”.

Has it really grown this much since March? Perhaps the ramp up of the US presidential campaign, with Republican candidates like Trump competing to be openly skeptical [...]

What consensus? Less than half of climate scientists agree with the IPCC “95%” certainty

I used to think there was a consensus among government-funded certified climate scientists, but a better study by Verheggen Strengers, Verheegen, and Vringer shows even that is not true.[1] The “97% consensus” is now 43%.

Finally there is a decent survey on the topic, and it shows that less than half of what we would call “climate scientists” who research the topic and for the most part, publish in the peer reviewed literature, would agree with the IPCC’s main conclusions. Only 43% of climate scientists agree with the IPCC “95%” certainty.

More than 1800 international scientists studying various aspects of climate change (including climate physics, climate impacts, and mitigation) responded to the questionnaire. Some 6550 people were invited to participate in this survey, which took place in March and April 2012. Respondents were picked because they had authored articles with the key words ‘global warming’ and/or ‘global climate change’, covering the 1991–2011 period, via the Web of Science, or were included the climate scientist database assembled by Jim Prall, or just by a survey of peer reviewed climate science articles. Prall’s database includes some 200 names that have criticized mainstream science and about half had only published in [...]

Pope’s popularity fall 17% — preaching the climate change religion not so popular?

Pope Francis put out his pro-climate encyclical eight weeks ago, getting mass media attention, but the latest Gallop poll shows the people were not so enthused:

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Pope Francis’ favorability rating in the U.S. has returned to where it was when he was elected pope. It is now at 59%, down from 76% in early 2014. The pontiff’s rating is similar to the 58% he received from Americans in April 2013, soon after he was elected pope.

Is this about “climate change” — the encyclical has 245 paragraphs, 16 mentions of “climate”, 7 mentions of “carbon”, and more than 100 mentions of the “environment”. Moreso it reported around the globe as a “coup” on the climate issue by groups who normally think the Pope is wrong, silly and anachronistic. Furthermore,  the biggest change has come among Catholics, Protestants, and especially conservatives. But he’s less popular among liberals too.

The drop in the pope’s favorable rating is driven by a decline among Catholics and political conservatives, two groups that have been ardent supporters of the modern papacy. Seventy-one percent of Catholics say they have a favorable image of Francis, down from 89% last year.

UK youth unconvinced about climate change — peak believers 30-50 years old

I’ve discussed the big ComRes/ITV survey before, which  showed that 62% of UK citizens are skeptics and are not convinced that humans are changing the weather. This is the same interesting survey which also showed that the highest proportion of skeptics were in the educated upper middle class, and the lowest was in the unskilled workers and pensioners. I didn’t explain then that this survey also split the groups according to age. So here (finally) are those graphs. Fittingly the young are undecided and the wise are more skeptical. But surprisingly there is a peak believer age, and that’s around 35 – 44. Either this generation has been assailed with more propaganda than any other, or something else is going on.

Is this the beginnings of the youthful revolution? Only 20% 34% of 18 – 24 year olds would be called believers?

They quizzed 2047 people from across the UK early last year and I’ve graphed the results according to age, and the “peak believer” band is clearly visible. In all three questions I colored believers red, and skeptics blue. The undecided are grey.

People generally switch from the “don’t know” category when they are young into the skeptic camp [...]

Most Australians are skeptical: mankind is not main driver of the climate

The IPCC has told us in letters of fire for twenty years that humans are the dominant cause of climate change. But despite the unending propaganda 60% of Australians are not convinced. This fits with other better designed and much larger surveys by CSIRO showing that 53% of the population are skeptical, and a UK study which showed that 63% of British people were skeptical that storms and floods are probably man-made.

The IPSOS polls have been running for years, and are unashamedly pro-IPCC in leaning, but despite that obvious bias, and loaded, ambiguous questions, most Australians don’t agree that it is mainly our fault. The climate is changing but it is mainly or partly natural. IPSOS gloss over that, but if humans are responsible for less than half of “climate change” that makes Direct Action twice as useless. If natural forces caused more of the recent warming, that also reduces the scary projections.

The IPSOS Climate Change Report 2015 (Online poll, 1,063 people)

Q3: Which best describes your opinion about the causes of climate change?

Only 40% of Australians accept the IPCC position that mankind is the main cause of climate change (orange and red). | Click [...]

Youth are rebelling against climate dogma: at 18-20, nearly half in US are skeptical

The X-Gens will be the maximal climate believers. The worm is turning with an uptick in skeptical thinking coming from the late-Millennials (born after 1994) who are just now starting to reach a voting age*. This group was raised on climate dogma and relentless propaganda, and the age-old rebellion of youth is starting to kick in. The big-scare-campaign may have missed its moment; it’s been pushed too hard for too long. Not only have the PDO and other natural cycles rolled into unfriendly cooler-wetter zones, but the generational wheel is rolling too.

It used to be that the older the survey group, the more skeptical it was. Youth are easily fooled by passion and namecalling. But new evidence suggests the rebellion factor is kicking in: 20% of 18-20 year olds in the US are implacable skeptics, and 23% are  unconvinced. After twenty years of propaganda 55% of the generation “believe”, and only 12% are passionate. More of the same is not going to increase that. There is real hope here.

Data comes from Harvard Public Opinion Project. (PDF, currently not publicly available)


Harvard Political Review “For Young Voters, Climate Change Takes a Back Seat“


The invisible swinging environmental vote (20% of the population?)

There’s another more subtle message to politicians from the Gallop poll last week. The headline we discussed was that a whole quarter of the US are emphatic skeptics who don’t worry “at all” about climate change. But the other message is that if the politicans want to show they care about the environment, nearly every major environmental issue is more important to voters than “climate change”: 55% of the population worries about water pollution but only 32% feel the same level of concern for global warming.

On environmental concerns, climate change has the highest profile, but is consistently low ranking in the concern-stakes. People are much more worried about clean water, lakes and rivers, and air pollution rather than “climate change”. There is room here for either side of politics to step over the top of the supposedly greenest left wing parties and win voters by tackling real pollution rather than the fantasy kind. Any party that took serious action on rivers and water would earn environmental kudos and swinging votes. They wouldn’t win the die hard green vote, because those votes are not about the environment anyway. But true swingers shift between the major parties, and they are less [...]

One quarter of the US are now implacable skeptics of “climate change” fears

The new Gallup Poll is out. Most commentators are focused on the worried “a great deal” category, which is back to 1989 levels, but that’s largely noise. The important trend is at the other end of the spectrum, and seems to be missed. The only category with steady growth are the hard core skeptics, people who are worried “not at all”.  That’s doubled from 12 to 24%; the trend is up.  This is an unequivocal category. One quarter of the population are solidly, completely skeptical.

Given the 4% errors, there are only two clear trends in this table below. Firstly, those who had no opinion have now got one, and it’s skeptical. Secondly, the number of the most implacable skeptics has doubled.  After 20 years of propaganda the section of the population that is not buying the scare is steadily increasing. The size of the groups with variable levels of worry flicks up and down as people switch. But the numbers of those who worry “not at all” are steadily rising, and therein lies the death of the scare. It’s a one way ticket from being uninformed and worried to the “only a little/not at all” category.

The “enviro-scare” campaign [...]

Want to save tax and “save the world” from carbon? No Thanks say 92% of Swiss

These results are devastating for the carbonistas. In the lead-up to Paris, every time someone suggests “there is momentum”, remind them of this Swiss result. The majority of western populations do not want serious climate action, they don’t want to pay more for energy, and countries are not “picking up the carbon challenge”.

The Greens in Switzerland asked the Swiss to dump the VAT tax and replace it with a “carbon tax”. It would (in theory) mean  Swiss people could pay less tax overall, and save the environment at the same time. Greenpeace and World Wildlife Fund endorsed it, and 92% of Swiss people rejected it.

Swiss Voters Reject Initiative to Replace VAT System With Carbon Tax

Roughly 92% of voters opposed the initiative, known as “Energy Rather than VAT,” while 8% supported the measure, according to preliminary results from 13 of the country’s 26 cantons.

The Swiss cabinet had recommended voters reject the proposal because it would likely have caused a falloff in revenue for the federal government. The current VAT tax, which ranges from 2.5% to 8%, generated income of 22.6 billion Swiss francs ($22.92 billion) for the federal government in 2013, according to [...]

“Moral duty” poll: 57% don’t think UN Scientists can speak with authority on climate

New study says going on about “moral duty” will convince the skeptics (Sure, load on the guilt trip)

Last weekend a Reuters IPSOS survey found that if you ask the right questions, a majority of Americans see climate change as a moral obligation. The brains trust  inferred from this that the climate propaganda groups ought to load up on discussing values to convince conservatives as if that might be the magic key.

“The moral imperative is the way to reach out to conservatives,” said Rev. Mitch Hescox, president of the Evangelic Environmental Network, a large evangelical organization that advocates for action on climate change. ”Talking in terms of values is the only way forward if we are to bring our fellow Republicans along.”

UPDATE: Results of the online poll 2,412

Thanks to Pat for finding the survey. How the full results change the picture. Half the population are skeptics. And most people distrust experts, politicians, and even UN scientists.

 Q6. Which of the following people, if any, do you think can speak with authority

about global warming?   UN scientists 43%   Bill Nye (the Science Guy) 31%   Al Gore 18%   President Obama 18% [...]