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Climate Change Deniers Mostly Conservative White Males

Many say global warming will never happen

“I see no climate change.”

Do you insist that climate change is a hoax? Think it’s not being driven by human activity? If so, you’re more likely to be a conservative white male.

This conclusion is the result of a new study, Cool Dudes: The Denial Of Climate Change Among Conservative White Males In The United States published in the July issue of the Journal of Global Environmental Change and based on responses from 10,000 people in polls on environmental issues conducted by Gallup over the last 10 years.

The two researchers, Riley E. Dunlap and Aaron M. McCright focused on responses from people in Gallup’s phone interviews that indicated:

• When people believe the effects of global warming will happen

• Whether climate change is attributed to human activities or natural change

• Whether they believe global warming occurs

• How much they personally worry about climate change

• Whether they believe in the scientific evidence on global warming, and how much they think they know about climate change

Twenty-nine point six percent of conservative white males said they believed that the effects of global warming will never happen, while only 7.4 percent of all other U.S. adults agreed with that view.

The results also showed that 58.5 percent of conservative white males denied that recent temperature increases are primarily caused by human activities, compared to 31.5 percent of all other adults.

Conservative white males (65.1 percent) were also more than twice as likely to say the media exaggerated the seriousness of climate change compared to other adults (29.9 percent). And 39.1 percent of conservative white males said they did not worry at all about global warming, compared to 14.4 percent of all other adults.

Commenting on the study, Dunlap said that because conservative white men tend to benefit from the current socio-economic system and subscribe to a hierarchical and individualistic worldview, recognizing climate change would be against the current status quo.

While 97 percent of scientists say that human activity is a significant part of what’s causing a rise in global temperatures, climate change denial has actually increased in the U.S. general public over the last 10 years. Dunlap believes this is largely thanks to the growing climate change denial lobby.