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Published on September 26th, 2019 | by Steve Hanley


US War On California Emissions Standards Gets Approval From Republicans, Opprobrium From Democrats

September 26th, 2019 by  

Nothing illustrates how wide the gap is between Republicans and Democrats in America than the attitudes people in both groups have toward the decision by the EPA to revoke California’s authority to set its own vehicle emission standards.

In a survey conducted during the third week of September, Autolist asked 1,100 new car shoppers their opinion about the action taken by the federal government to deny California the right to establish its own emissions standards. In an e-mail to CleanTechnica, Autolist analyst Chase Disher said, “Some degree of disagreement was to be expected along party lines but frankly we were surprised by how divisive this issue was among car shoppers.”

Credit: Autolist

Overall,  half of all respondents said they believed California should have the ability to set its own emission standards, 29% said the believed California shouldn’t be allowed to set their own standards, and 21% were unsure.

But when analyzed by political party affiliation, the results showed a clear split along party lines. Only 37% of Republicans agreed that California should be allowed to keep its current ability compared to 61% of Democrats and 56% of Independents.

The split between parties widened when Autolist asked shoppers how they felt about the current administration’s approach to climate change. 61% of Republicans said they agreed with the administration’s climate policies, 16% disagreed with them, and 23% were unsure. Just 9% of Democrats agreed with the Trump administration’s policies, 70% disagreed, and 21% were unsure.

The Role Of Human Activity In Climate Change

When the survey asked whether human activity was responsible for climate change, 87% of Democrats said yes, while 6% said no and 7% said they were unsure. Among Republicans, 39% said yes, 37% said no, and 24% were unsure.

Opinions are like noses — everybody has one. But it is hard to understand how 61% of Republicans could say they agree with the US government’s decision to give the entire world the finger by withdrawing from the Paris climate accords.

Have these people not noticed the increasing frequency and ferocity of storms? Do they think 26 inches of rain in a matter of days in Houston is in any way normal? Do they think the reports of melting glaciers and ice caps are lies? Do they think communities like Paradise, California should just suck it up when the whole town burns down and go back to work the next day as if nothing unusual has happened? Apparently, the answer to those questions is “Yes.” 

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About the Author

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his homes in Florida and Connecticut or anywhere else the Singularity may lead him. You can follow him on Twitter but not on any social media platforms run by evil overlords like Facebook.

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