5. Efficacy Beliefs

Climate Change in the American Mind, September 2021

5.1. Few Americans think it is too late to do anything about global warming.

Two in three Americans (67%) either “strongly” (41%) or “somewhat” (26%) disagree with the statement that “it’s already too late to do anything about global warming.” By contrast, relatively few Americans either “strongly” or “somewhat” agree with this statement.

5.2. Most Americans disagree with the statement “the actions of a single individual won’t make any difference in global warming.”

About four in ten Americans (39%) either “strongly” (14%) or “somewhat” (25%) agree with the statement “the actions of a single individual won’t make any difference in global warming.” In contrast, about six in ten Americans (61%) either “strongly” (23%) or “somewhat” (38%) disagree that individual actions won’t make a difference.

5.3. Americans are split about whether new technologies can solve global warming without individual action.

Many Americans (48%) either “strongly” or “somewhat” agree that “new technologies can solve global warming without individuals having to make big changes in their lives,” while 52% of Americans either “strongly” or “somewhat” disagree.


Citation

Leiserowitz, A., Maibach, E., Rosenthal, S., Kotcher, J., Carman, J., Neyens, L., Marlon, J., Lacroix, K., & Goldberg, M. (2021). Climate Change in the American Mind, March 2021. Yale University and George Mason University. New Haven, CT: Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.

Funding Sources

The research was funded by the 11th Hour Project, the Energy Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Grantham Foundation.

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