Canadians are deeply frustrated by the quality of politicians’
discussions of climate change and global warming according to a nationally representative poll carried out for the Frontier Centre for Public Policy by COMPAS Research and completed September 29, 2008. Such frustrations cut across regions and party groupings.
Most Canadians tend to subscribe to the anthropogenic viewpoint that human activity is responsible for global warming and climate change.
An overwhelming majority of the public nonetheless does not believe that the causes of climate change have been fully identified or that the debate has been settled. By a more than 4:1 margin, the public calls upon the media to provide more multi-sided reporting on the issue.
The national poll shows that almost all Canadians have seen media reports portraying reasons why human activity should be considered the cause of global warming and climate change. By contrast, fewer than half of Canadians have seen reports espousing the point of view of the climate change skeptics, those who attribute climate change to non-human factors.
Analysis of the poll results shows that media reports are the key driver of what the public believes. The data show that those members of the public who have seen media reports expressing the climate change sceptics’ viewpoints evaluate these viewpoints far more sympathetically than those who have not.