With the popularity of An Inconvenient Truth and the news that 2006 was one of the warmest years on record, climate change is likely to be one of the major issues in the 2008 presidential debates (see "Warm Planet, Cool Ideas," feature, July/August 2006).
In October of last year, astudy commissioned by the Earth Day Network found that more than 50 percent of Americans areextremely concerned about global warming and its effects on their livesand are siding with candidates who activelyaddress the issue. Although higher fuel-efficiency standards top the list of globalwarming solutions for most voters (Democrats, 71 percent;Republicans, 49 percent; independents, 65 percent),the poll revealsthat Democratsfavor taxing oil companies and worry primarily about global warming’s effects ontheir children’s future and public health and safety. Republicans care about its effect on theeconomy and independents mostly side withDemocrats.One of every two Democrat or independent voters would changetheir personal habits in order to solve global warming, compared tojust one in three Republicans.All members of each party, however, agree that purchasing energy-efficient products andservices is the best way to help reduce global warming.CONTACT: Earth Day Network, (202)518-0044, www.earthday.net. —Jennifer Greco