Framing Peak Petroleum as a Public Health Problem: Audience Research and Participatory Engagement

Between December 2009 and January 2010, we conducted a nationally representative telephone survey of US adults to explore perceptions of risks associated with peak petroleum. We asked respondents to assess the likelihood that oil prices would triple over the next 5 years and then to estimate the economic and health consequences of that event. Nearly half indicated that oil prices were likely to triple, causing harm to human health; an additional 16% said dramatic price increases were unlikely but would harm health if they did occur. A large minority said sharp increases in oil prices would be ‘‘very harmful’’ to health. Respondents who self-identified as very conservative and those who were strongly dismissive of climate change were the respondents most likely to perceive very harmful health consequences. Download the Article Here.

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