World opinion on global warming: not so hot

Results of the latest Gallup poll:

Worldwide, Blame for Climate Change Falls on Humans
Americans among least likely to attribute to human causes
by Julie Ray and Anita Pugliese
WASHINGTON, D.C. — World residents are more likely to blame human activities than nature for the rise in temperatures associated with climate change. Thirty-five percent of adults in 111 countries in 2010 say global warming results from human activities, while less than half as many (14%) blame nature. Thirteen percent fault both.

Lawrence Solomon makes an observation:

In Sub-Saharan Africa, where 54% are not aware that their climate is alleged to be warming, a mere 22% have heard of the global warming issue and predominantly blame humans for the warming. In undeveloped Asia, 48% are unaware that the climate is warming and 27% predominantly blame humans.

It would seem that access to MSM figures greatly in that trend, many of the world’s poorest have no radio, TV, newspapers, or Internet access. But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?

The Gallup poll is available here (PDF) and  questions, and the responses by region and by country, are here.

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54 thoughts on “World opinion on global warming: not so hot

  1. Both those links at the bottom go to the same PDF document. Both seem to show the results but not a list of the questions used or much discussion of methodology.

  2. Taken broadly, amongst informed populations this is a measure of how they feel towards authorities.

    In developed Asia, authorities apparently get a lot of respect, while the US is literally home to the “show me” state. We learned long ago that authorities are just as full of BS as everyone else.

  3. Given the amount of resources that have been marshalled to the CAGW cause it is encouraging that so many do not “believe”.

    The trick (sorry about my word choice) will be to find a alternative way for those dependent on CAGW research funding to earn a decent living. That’s seems to be the best way reverse the belief in CAGW given that “evidence” continues to be misinterpreted and altered to serve the watermelon cause.

  4. Of course global warming is mankind’s fault. We were stupid enough to invent the phrase and gullible enough to believe it.

  5. Combet: 10 big errors
    by Bob Carter, David Evans, Stewart Franks & Bill Kininmonth

    April 17, 2011

    Ten more faulty assertions from Climate Minister Combet

    Climate Minister Greg Combet delivered a major speech at the National Press Club on April 13th entitled “Tackling Climate change in the National Interest”.

    The earlier part of Minister Combet’s speech traversed various scientific issues, which we analyse below, putting his statements in bold type, and our commentary in ordinary type.

    ——————————————————————————–

    1. The evidence of atmospheric warming is very strong, and the potential for dangerous climate impacts is high. The scientific advice is that carbon (sic) pollution (sic) is the cause.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Atmospheric warming and cooling happen the whole time naturally, and global temperature has been level or cooling gently for the last ten years; and that despite the fact that a quarter of all human emissions of carbon dioxide, over all of history, have occurred since 1998.

    No empirical evidence has been provided, and especially not by the IPCC or Professor Steffen, that a significant part of the late 20th century warming was caused by human carbon dioxide emissions. Instead, warming alarmist arguments rely upon computer modelling and assumptions about positive feedback from moist air and clouds.

    Neither has any evidence been provided that the number or intensity of dangerous climatic events has in the near past fallen outside of normal natural variation.

    The term “carbon pollution” is a pejorative term that displays ignorance by those who use it. In reality, the public debate is about the magnitude of the warming effect exercised by human carbon dioxide emissions. Carbon dioxide from whatever source is an environmental benefice that sustains most of the ecosystems on planet Earth.

    ————————————————-

    Read the remainder: http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2011/04/global-warming-10-big-errors

  6. Finally, with that table, there is some proof that Americans are the smartest people on the planet!

  7. ” … are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”
    Absolutely! The whole shebang is a “man-made crisis“. And I don’t mean that mankind is responsible for a few tenths of a degree of global temperature rise, but rather a faux-crisis has been created to convince us to hand over control of our lives, our funds and the energy required for modern life to those who will save us from our fossil-fuelled-folly.

  8. “But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”

    With the same precision as used in determining global temperature, I’m 99.84792% certain we probably wouldn’t have noticed an unprecedented crisis otherwise until the year 2085.

  9. “But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”

    So because someone with no way of monitoring decade changes in global temperature hasn’t noticed the changes it’s nothing to worry about?

    A Kalahari bushman hasn’t noticed the ice caps are melting therefore it all fine.

    That’s got to be one for Skeptic quote of the week!

  10. I wonder why the US is leading the way on it’s natural causes. It’s the only place that puts natural causes higher than man-made unless I missed one.

    I guess it’ll catch up with the rest of the World in a few years times.

  11. Given enough time and climate variance, humans will indeed notice the change. For example over 400 years ago, the mismatch of the Julian Calendar with the solar year became evident to church leaders with cold weather and the lack of Easter Lilies during the Easter season. (No doubt also compounded by a colder climate.) This gave impetus to develop the more accurate Gregorian Calendar.

  12. I sincerely wish that instead of spending more money on research for these kinds of polls, they use the money to build schools for impoverished children. These people don’t need to be lectured on how to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. They need running water, safe and effective means to generate electricity and heat their homes and, furthermore, the opportunity to receive an education which they, in turn, will use to better the lives of all those in their communities.

  13. Of course, they are manufacturing a crisis that we would not have noticed. In fact, we have not noticed it yet as it is not happening.

    What gives the warmist/alarmists traction is that changes in temperature are so small that people cannot detect them at all in their daily lives. Only by taking temperature data, doing a value added adjustment to produce paper warming, can they then try to alarm the public..

  14. Here is another subterfuge in the poll:
    1. Temperature rise is a part of GW or CC.
    2. Do you think rising temperatures are ….

    #1 a true statement. But it plants the seed that temp rise is only caused by GW or CC.
    #2 assumes that Temperatures ARE rising.
    Thanks to #1, Rising Temperatures must be linked to GW or CC.
    And now we ask if rising Temps are caused by humans or nature to imply human caused GW.
    David Copperfield could learn a few things about misdirection from Gallop.

    Here’s my answer. Temperatures where I live [central Houston, TX] might be rising. If they are, it is mostly because of human activities causing an increased Urban Heat Island effect. Houston’s population gained > 1.9 million people from 1990 to 2011 to its current 6.1 million. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Houston

    That’s human induced activity, alright. It might even count as local climate change. But it is only evidence of UHI effect; it is not evidence of Global Warming.

  15. One of the first things that prompted me to be more skeptical was my experience of mid-July, early-August high temperatures in my home state. I’ve lived here for 35-plus years, and temperatures of 95-plus degrees fahrenheit are pretty standard for that time of year.

    When I started hearing people saying things like, “Boy, it’s hot. You can really tell that global warming’s happening,” in response to the uncomfortably high temperatures, my BS alarm naturally started sounding. My response would always be a sarcastic “Yeah, it’s never been 95 degrees here in mid-July before. Cue the apocalypse.”

    I think it’s quite telling that indigenous populations can’t naturally tell there’s global warming happening unless big brother’s whispering it into their ears. Belief can be a powerful thing.

  16. Well, nobody asked me for my tuppence ha’penny worth!

    Lawrence Solomon has forgotten that the people in sub-Sahran Africa haven’t been sufficiently “educated” so they wouldn’t be able to notice things like drought, or changes in their environment. However we in Western Europe (PDREU/EUSR) are constantly being “educated” to believe in Climate Change & Global Warming & rising sea-levels! Was down at Exmouth Docks the other day, a fella there told me that the sea rose & fell twice that day! :-)) sarc off

  17. All this goes to show is that the rest of the world was never ready for the exporting of stupidity that inevitably happens from a nation that so cherishes freedom of speech.

    Yes, world, not every idea that is spawned in such a nation is worth thinking about. It’s not that American’s are dumb, quite the opposite, it’s that we’ll listen to BS long enough to watch it walk out the door when the money starts talking.

  18. I do agree that humans are to blame for global warming (..or cooling in any case, as things go): In special those humans of the liberal kind: They created it :-)

  19. If I lived in a large city in Developed Asia, I’d say “A result of human activities”, too.
    8-)

  20. SteveE says:
    April 27, 2011 at 8:44 am
    “But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”

    So because someone with no way of monitoring decade changes in global temperature hasn’t noticed the changes it’s nothing to worry about?

    A Kalahari bushman hasn’t noticed the ice caps are melting therefore it all fine.

    That’s got to be one for Skeptic quote of the week!

    Aboriginal peoples as a rule have extensive and detailed oral histories. If they aren’t aware of what happened in “grandfather’s grandfather’s time” they run the risk of being dead for not anticipating long term changes.

    I guess as far as you’re concerned, there just isn’t even the tiniest chance the whole CAGW meme is a total crock.

  21. H.R.

    With the same precision as used in determining global temperature, I’m 99.84792% certain we probably wouldn’t have noticed an unprecedented crisis otherwise until the year 2085.

    What’s so special about 2085 that will make us suddenly realized there is a problem? I’m sure you were just trying to be cute with that remark, but you’re essentially calling the global population stupid, or at least ill informed.

    The major story here is that in both the US and the World as a whole, only about 1/3 of the populate buy the line that humans are responsible for a global warming crisis.

    To me that looks like the end for the alarmists.

    MikeEE

  22. The report says:

    “””Survey Methods
    Results are based on face-to-face and telephone interviews conducted in 2010 with approximately 1,000 adults, aged 15 and older, in 111 countries. For results based on the total sample in each country, one can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error ranges from ±1.7 percentage points to ±5.7 percentage points. The margin of error reflects the influence of data weighting. In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.”””

    111 countries sound impressive. But is the sample size 1000 per country or 9 people per country, ? If the latter I do not think my stats tutor would have let me get away with a report like this especially with all the caveats.

  23. The US media are generally rather silent on the topic of the indigenous American people and their energy efficient lives (some 50 million apparently) that had to make way for the incoming holier-than-thou people and their media networks. Funny how history repeats itself.

  24. Not surprising that folks are so uninformed given the propaganda that has been put out for years now. That is, of course, if one can believe the study.

  25. This poll is pretty meaningless.

    A much better one was the one MORI conducted worldwide asking people the top 3 (out of 15) environmental problems.

    Only 33% of people put GW in the top 3.

    In the UK it was 25% – more people were worried about energy security and garbage collections.

    Support for the scam has collapsed.

    http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/849698/only_a_quarter_of_uk_population_concerned_about_climate_change.html

    Full details here:

    http://www.ipsos-mori.com/researchpublications/researcharchive/2771/Energy-security-is-a-top-concern-for-Brits.aspx

  26. Ken Hall says: “Finally, with that table, there is some proof that Americans are the smartest people on the planet!”

    Right! Oh, wait. They elected Obama. Never mind.

  27. Skeptics you must accept that Global warming causes absolutely everything & stop your mindless questioning of the models and how thy arrived at such wacky conclusions, Stop putting up scientific fact based roadblocks to these wonderful climate scientist’s, their paymaster’s Governments and shadowy backers, they are trying to save the world – (Sarc off)

    Anyone who has been paying attention to the environmental movement has got to conclude it is a collective insanity that has nothing to do with conservation, or caring for the planet, it’s oceans or any life forms including humans!

    But don’t forget the real power the movers and shakers behind the scene that are in it for the POWER AND MONEY!

    While the USA stands poised on defaulting on its ever-growing debt—the highest in the nation’s history. Obamas – Czars and Chicago Mafia work night and day to fulfill a crackpots green dreams and line their pockets!

    While wars & insurrections are waged in the Middle East, across northern Africa, and in the Ivory Coast!

    While the Middle East is going in to a tailspin, that has frightening implications for them and the rest of the world.

    While radical Islam gains strength from the turmoil and wage a wider terrorism effort at home and worldwide.

    While Japan struggles to deal with a major earthquake & nuclear plant disaster & economic disruption that will take years to recover from & negatively affect the world’s shaky economy!

    While European nations attempt to deal with their own financial crisis their economy’s are crashing & burning, the Environmentalists/Greens with the collusion of governments engage in the most absurd frauds & nonsense since the Dark Ages!

    Environmentalist and governments in the USA & worldwide are devoted to the collapse of every scientific & technological advance of the past century along with the capitalist system that made it possible.

    We are seeing a green collective madness with a race to jump of the cliff first in the name of Gaia!

    A small but terrifying example is the Australian labor governments – Eco green insanity that is designed to destroy the health and well being of the people and the economy no matter what the cost in the name of Gaia!

    We are living in an age were lunatics with university degrees in socialism have risen to the top and any hope of reason has sunk to the bottom!

    We must stop them!!!!!

  28. Indigenous people can’t be fooled by numbers. It takes education to be fooled by numbers; the higher the education the higher the gullibility.

  29. @ MikeEE
    April 27, 2011 at 9:53 am

    Responding to H.R.

    Howdy, MikeEE. I thought most regulars here would recognize a writing style that includes “unwarrented precision in numbers” “probably” “unprecedented” and a date far out in the future where I’ll be dead and no one will remember what was predicted anyhow.

    Does that writing style ring a bell, now? ;o)

  30. From the Gallup Survey
    “Survey Methods
    Results are based on face-to-face and telephone interviews conducted in 2010 with approximately 1,000 adults, aged 15 and older, in 111 countries. For results based on the total sample in each country, one can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error ranges from +/- 1.7 percentage points to ±5.7 percentage points. The margin of error reflects the influence of data weighting. In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.”
    As was blogged about by JoNova, and referred to by Bushy,this survey apparently was done on 1000 subjects distributed over 111 countries. If true, this makes the results laughable. On the other hand, the fact that they were reported at all makes one weep.

  31. I’m a little surprised by this survey in how it relates to Eastern Europe. To my understanding belief in AGW in the Czech Republic was only about 12%. If true I suspect it’s because they’d spent decades living under the boot. It’s not for nothing that Vaclav Klaus compared AGW extremism with communism and declared them both as, ‘anti-human’.

  32. Anyone wanting to laugh at the doom-and-gloomers, should read this article -

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,944914,00.html

    It’s from Time, June 24 1974, and is entitled:

    Another Ice Age?

    quotes…

    “…Man, too, may be somewhat responsible for the cooling trend. The University of Wisconsin’s Reid A. Bryson and other climatologists suggest that dust and other particles released into the atmosphere as a result of farming and fuel burning may be blocking more and more sunlight from reaching and heating the surface of the earth…

    “…Whatever the cause of the cooling trend, its effects could be extremely serious, if not catastrophic. Scientists figure that only a 1% decrease in the amount of sunlight hitting the earth’s surface could tip the climatic balance, and cool the planet enough to send it sliding down the road to another ice age within only a few hundred years…

    “…The earth’s current climate is something of an anomaly; in the past 700,000 years, there have been at least seven major episodes of glaciers spreading over much of the planet…”

    Sound familiar?

  33. D. J. Hawkins says:
    April 27, 2011 at 9:40 am

    Aboriginal peoples don’t live at the poles mate. How can a oral tradition say how hot it is if you have no way of measuring the temperature.

    Ask the Inuit what they think is happening if you like, they generally agree that the climate is getting hotter.

    The anti-CAGW meme is strong in you it seems.

  34. D. J. Hawkins says:

    SteveE says:
    April 27, 2011 at 8:44 am

    Aboriginal peoples as a rule have extensive and detailed oral histories. If they aren’t aware of what happened in “grandfather’s grandfather’s time” they run the risk of being dead for not anticipating long term changes.

    SteveE is indicative of a phenomenon I noticed quite some time ago: People who stay isolated in their “ivory towers” have a tendency to base their beliefs on what they’re told rather than on what they can observe for themselves – simply by stepping outside.

    I would be rather interested in seeing the results of a poll of farmers, for example, and their thoughts on global warming.

  35. “Survey Methods
    Results are based on face-to-face and telephone interviews conducted in 2010 with approximately 1,000 adults, aged 15 and older, in 111 countries. For results based on the total sample in each country, one can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error ranges from +/- 1.7 percentage points to ±5.7 percentage points. The margin of error reflects the influence of data weighting. In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.”

    Average of nine people per country. That tells me that no one questioned the bushman in the Kalahari, that someone mentioned above. He doesn’t have a cell phone nor the signal to go with it, and I can’t imagine someone driving hundreds of miles on indifferent roads to ask him. Those questioned no doubt lived in cities, where even in sub Saharan Africa most people live. The question wording quite clearly introduced error, since there is no provision for indicating disbelief in the warming that is an absolute given. What one can say with confidence, 100% confidence, is that the margin for error is 100%, making the whole exercise utterly futile

  36. Why are Americans BY FAR more skeptical
    GISS = USA
    UAH = USA
    RSS = USA
    Hadcrut = UK

    3 of the 4 monitors of ‘global temps’ are US based. We know the players and we know the game.

  37. SteveE says:
    April 27, 2011 at 12:36 pm
    “Ask the Inuit what they think is happening if you like, they generally agree that the climate is getting hotter.”

    I’m sure there will soon be a long line of peoples clamouring that Global Warming has affected them, after all wasn’t the UN looking to hand out something like $100 billion a year by 2020 to those affected! (Just as scientific funding biased towards CAGW received massive funding – and we all know how that resulted in huge confirmation bias!)

  38. Well, apparently at least respondents in the USA have not yet been brainwashed by the media here if 47 % think any warming is due to natural causes and only 34% think humanity is responsible. But the big problem I have with it anyhow is why worry about a trivial 1 to 1.5 C per CENTURY rise as the unpolluted satellite data is telling us?

  39. Crisis manufacturing or sleight of hand, either way it’s a game.
    For the folks living in Africa & Asia, they have a very long history of being around climate and know what it’s capable of doing. They didn’t survive that many 1,000′s of years just because. They’ve been there, done that.

  40. Oh we are the worst!!
    This is, at least partly, due to the CAGW propaganda by NHK (couterpart of BBC) and leftist MSM, quite successful so far.
    However, in the blogosphere I notice a clear change since Climategate.

    OT, but the current status of the quake aftermath:
    The dead/missing people amount to a bit more than 26,000.
    Still more than 130 thousand refugees.

  41. So either the US is right and the rest of the world is wrong, or the rest of the world is right and the USA is wrong.

    Could be teasing when the answer is finally revealed!

    Andy

  42. A few days ago, I posted a link to a similar Gallup poll in “Tips & Notes”. The same authors published the findings two days prior to the findings that are the subject of this WUWT post. I believe the findings of this earlier poll, combined with the poll Anthony cites, give a clearer and more comprehensive view of world opinion on “global warming” (to use Gallup’s terminology):

    April 20, 2011
    Fewer Americans, Europeans View Global Warming as a Threat
    Worldwide, 42% see serious risk, similar to 2007-2008
    by Anita Pugliese and Julie Ray

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/147203/Fewer-Americans-Europeans-View-Global-Warming-Threat.aspx#1

    Here are the questions asked in the poll:

    How serious of a threat is global warming to you and your family?
    How much do you know about global warming or climate change?
    How serious of a threat is global warming to you and your family?

  43. A quick clarification to my previous post.

    Results to the question “How serious of a threat is global warming to you and your family?” are presented two different ways. First by region, and then, later, by country.

  44. Marion says:
    April 27, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    So you agree with my earlier comment that the statement at the end of the article (below) is a load of rubbish then:

    “But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”

    I think the Inuit would me more likely to notice any changes than the klahari bushmen for example.

  45. SteveE says:
    April 28, 2011 at 2:49 am
    “I think the Inuit would me more likely to notice any changes than the kalahari bushmen for example.”

    I’d have to agree with you SteveE – as the polar regions are supposed to warm more than, say, equatorial zones. But then I’d have to say here in sunny South Australia for the 3 summers have progressively seemed cooler to me. Couple of bitey hot bits of plus 40C (not this year) but overall cool. I’ve noticed my persimmons are ripening fully a month late now. Winter is a little milder due to more cloud cover and wetter too. Buggered up the state govt’s dream of selling us water from the new distill plant. Might be useful in 10yrs time. Anyway, it was like this I recall in the mid 70s. Stuffed up a couple of years beach time as a teen. Oral history mate and the BOM doesn’t tell us how cool it is.

  46. I’m sulking because I can see Northern Hemisphere in the table at top, but where is Aust and NZ and Sth Africa and Sth America? We are not illiterate down under and we can give scores. Like we can thrash England at cricket when we want to.

  47. “It would seem that access to MSM figures greatly in that trend, many of the world’s poorest have no radio, TV, newspapers, or Internet access. But one has to wonder, if the people that live closest to the earth (such as natives in sub-Saharan Africa) can’t detect changes around them, are we manufacturing a crisis that we wouldn’t notice otherwise?”

    Definitely yes, as others above have said.

    Many peoples, with intact cultural traditions, who don’t have MSM, etc. maintain long oral histories and these histories include weather/climate.

    If the climate was noticeably different than it was in, say, their grandfather’s time, then I’m sure they would have noticed. Especially if some form of climate issue caused them undue hardship or they had to to move from one place to another.

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