New Survey Indicates Climate Change Isn’t a Major Concern for Americans

By: Julia Mehalko | Published: May 23, 2024

A new survey suggests that climate change isn’t the number one concern for the majority of Americans. Though climate change remains important to many in the United States, many Americans have other issues that they deem to be more important.

This study is the latest inside look into how regular Americans view hot-topic issues, particularly during an election year.

Americans Have Other Worries

According to this new poll by CBS News and conducted by YouGov, Americans have quite a lot of worries they consider “very important” this year.

Many people outside holding American flags.

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Surprisingly, climate change isn’t in the top five categories of things they deem to be incredibly essential, particularly during an election year.

The Number One Issue

At the moment, the number one issue a majority of Americans have has to do with the economy. This YouGov poll shows that 82% of Americans surveyed believe the economy is very important in the country today.

An up-close look at the stock exchange board with many numbers.

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This isn’t necessarily a surprise, as the U.S. economy has struggled with ongoing high inflation problems for years now.

Economic Worries in the U.S.

With this said, it shouldn’t be a shock to learn that inflation takes the second spot in the main concern Americans have about the country today.

An up-close look at many American one-hundred dollar bills spread out.

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About 79% of Americans consider inflation to be very important. Americans have always put economic worries at the forefront of their mind, particularly during periods of unsteadiness.

Ongoing Immigration Worries

Immigration and the border are the next highest concern for average citizens of the U.S. As the southern border continues to go through what many analysts are calling a “crisis”, many Americans want to see some level of change at the border.

An up-close look at a barbed wire fence outside underneath a blue sky.

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As Congress and the White House previously were going to make moves to bring about this change, this issue is something that can actually be solved quickly — or, at least, certain aspects of it can be solved.

The State of the United States

According to this brand new poll, a majority of Americans are next most worried about the country’s state of democracy. About 61% consider this to be very important.

An American flag on a pole outside blowing in the wind amid a blue cloudy sky.

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This comes during what will likely be a bitter war between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump as they both try to reach the White House in November’s election.


Crime Problems and Abortion

Unfortunately, certain areas of the U.S. have seen an increase in crime. This problem has made many people incredibly concerned — and now, this poll suggests that this has become a major issue for Americans.

An NYPD police car parked on the street with yellow crime tape around it.

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About 65% of people polled believe crime is very important and should be addressed in the country today. Abortion has taken the next spot, as 51% deem it to be highly important.


Climate Change Has Fallen

Finally, we’ve arrived at climate change. Only 45% — less than half of Americans surveyed — believe that climate change is very important.

A traffic sign almost completely submerged by water during a flooding event.

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This is striking, especially as more people have come around to start to worry about climate change in recent years. However, with other ongoing issues in the country, Americans have had other problems to focus on.


How Americans Feel About Climate Change

Even though many Americans seem to no longer think bringing about climate change solutions is their most pressing concern, this doesn’t mean that they don’t want to actually bring about change.

A large forest fire seen on a huge hill during the evening.

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In fact, a majority of Americans polled also said that they support the country in their efforts to reduce climate change.


What Actions Should Be Taken?

However, this study didn’t ask participants about what climate change actions should be taken to bring about this end goal.

A close-up of a climate change protestor’s sign seen at a rally outside.

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That perhaps is one of the main reasons why Americans have instead chosen to focus on many other problems they have — as those problems could have immediate solutions. Climate change solutions, meanwhile, haven’t necessarily been discussed in detail.


No Climate Taxes

One thing Americans don’t want? Higher taxes to try to combat climate change. All Americans, regardless of party affiliation, tend to disagree with the aspect of raising taxes. This new poll even revealed that Americans are worried that solving climate change could hurt their wallet — something they don’t want.

A factory outside emitting smoke, gas, and pollution into the air.

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However, this does leave the government in a tricky position of having to find money to pay for potential climate change solutions and plans.


Biden vs Trump on Climate Change

Interestingly, those polled on climate change couldn’t see any difference between the climate initiatives by Biden and Trump. Instead, there was no distinction between the two presidents at all on this issue.

The White House seen behind green grass and trees in the daytime.

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Americans surveyed also revealed that neither Biden nor Trump would likely have policies that would bring about climate change solutions if they win the election this year.