Poll: Young Republicans Show Rising Environmental Concerns

One of the most consistent areas for the Trump Administration has been its extremely anti-environmental stance on everything from national parks to climate change to pollution control rollbacks. The assumption is that Republicans simply do not support the environment, an assumption that I have always contested. A new poll may give the GOP and its leadership some cause for pause in that regard. There is growing unease — and majority — among Republicans over environmental harm. The numbers showing up for younger Republicans should worry the leadership. Trump and others have made the party synonymous with climate change denial and anti-environmental protection. That could ultimately force young Republicans out of the party even thought they share other values on fiscal conservatism, states rights, and other issues. With women showing a shift away from Trump and the GOP, the loss of young voters would leave a dim future for the party.

Some 58 percent of Republicans agreed with the statement “I worry about the damage humans cause the planet.” The percentage rises 18 percentage points among Republican voters aged 18-34 with 67% supporting the position. The number of Republicans reporting that they have changed their habits to “live eco-consciously” is up 10 percent.

While Trump remains highly popular with Republican voters, the GOP has been looking closely at how it will be able to maintain a majority party position with the average age of its voting base shifting upward. Trump could be creating a lasting wedge issue in the party with younger voters who want to be fiscally conservative but also conservationists.

30 thoughts on “Poll: Young Republicans Show Rising Environmental Concerns”

  1. Fine as long as it’s legitimate. But i abhor this bad policy of giving the number one polluters a free pass because they supposedly have more votes. The large and very large metropolitan areas specifically. They never did and never will learn to live with nature instead of changing their demonstrably little heat sink etc.and pollution causing areas I’m for banning large metro areas and tearing them down as there no reasons left to have them. Our transport and communication systems do not require 100 factories in one 100 square mile area. to receive parts and deliver finished products. never mind one of them every hundred miles. Not if it means locking up the clean resources and burning the filthy resources as was and is Al Bores coal policy. and his secular 700 Club mentality.

  2. A few highlights of Republicans and the environment:

    Ulysses S Grant created Yellowstone National Park
    Benjamin Harrison – created national forest preserves
    Richard Nixon – created EPA, Endangered Species Act
    George Bush – helped reduce acid rain (a quarter of lakes in the Adirondacks were so acidic that they could not support fish), by amending the Clean Air Act to address coal pollution

    One of the alienating features of environmentalism is the insistence that the country return to third world conditions, and abandon fossil fuels before a viable, and economical, replacement has been found. In addition, there is intense pushback against clean nuclear energy. Then there were the cow farts discussions, the push for veganism.

    It’s rather like animal welfare has been taken over by maniacs in PETA who kidnap dogs to put them down, and believe pet ownership is evil. Some activists go to really extreme measures, like dressing up like a dinosaur and roaring in the faces of carriage horses to cause accidents. Opposing PeTA does not oppose animal welfare.

    Extremists sour support for their causes.

    I was a longtime supporter of the Sierra Club. However, after enough years of receiving Republican bashing mass mailings, the organization made it quite clear it was simply a Democratic PAC.

    It appears that only Republicans seem to be asking, how much will this cost everyone?

    I just received an enormous bill from Edison, because CA automatically enrolled everyone in the Clean Power Alliance without permission. Since wind and solar is very expensive, and not reliable, the more it is added to utilities, the higher the rate. This might not trouble the coastal elites, but it matters to the poor and middle class.

    There are two options to opt out. I can either pay a fine, called a Customer Responsibility Surcharge, and some sort of “transitional pricing” for 6 months. The other option is to remain with the very expensive Clean Power Alliance for 6 months, and then go directly to Edison standard pricing.

    Apparently, if you find this troublesome, you hate the environment.

    Leftism really does ruin everything it touches, including cleaning up the environment.

    1. Exel Energy in Denver and the Colorado State Assembly inflicted much the same deal on electricity consumers – it used to be the customer’s choice whether to pay a surcharge supporting wind-generated power (generated over 231 miles away around Lamar, making power loss due to Joule heatng of high-tension power lines inevitable – power not reliable enough to prevent massive use of coal and natural gas to provide baseload power).

      Now, the state of Colorado’s lawmakers decided it’s not just a good idea to pay for power generated in the most wasteful and expensive way possible – it’s the law!

      1. It’s almost like politicians are not electrical engineers and can’t balance a checkbook…

        So frustrating.

    2. As I noted and as Karen has confirmed, the GOP has done nothing on the environment in 20 years except try to weaken protections, including denying science if necessary for their goals.. (Bush srs acid rain work was in 1990, 29 years ago).

      Thanks Karen.

    3. Once Democrats stopped caring about how climate and environmental initiatives raised the cost of living of Americans, hitting the poor and middle class the hardest, they lost the Republican party.

      Democrats have gone so extreme that they’ve managed to alienate people on environmental issues. The proposal to ban air travel is just the latest in the bid to out do each other as the most extreme. They don’t seem to realize that we currently need fossil fuels to farm, harvest, and transport food, and just about every good and service in America. There is no infrastructure to replace that, affordably.

      There seems to be a waiving of the wrist, it will all just miraculously work out, and if you bring up the cost, you hate the environment. It’s quite divisive.

      We get our best work done when we work together, but we refuse to work together to end air travel or lead to starvation.

      The media adds to the hyperbole, such as the claim that when Trump gave the people of Alaska what it wanted, the use of its own resources as per the Forest Service, they proclaimed he was waging war on the environment. That’s not rational, and it certainly will never gain any consensus.

      Which means everyone will just remain at each others’ throats and nothing will get done. Bravo.

      1. We are not going to achieve meaningful ways to reduce pollution and lower energy costs if we insist on deferring all change to the hands of politicians. On a federal level at least they are completely incapable of managing something of this scope and importance on their own. They are simply as a whole either too incompetent, too dogmatic, or both. One alternative is for a concerned people to form organizations and advocate practices that make a difference through numerous attempts at workable strategies so that in the diverse collection of various ideas, some will have merit and promise–resulting in benefits to be realized.

        Politicians simply get in the way and should be removed from the equation…or at least kept at bay.

      2. Thanks to Karen for describing how and when the Democrats “lost the Republican party”. I was previously unaware of this golden age of American politics when the everyone was in one party.

        And of course, the fact that the GOP has done nothing on environmental issues for 20-30 years except try to trash it is the Democrats fault. Everything Republicans do is apparently in Karen’s bizarro world.

  3. “Hay Day”. Each party: Democratic and Republican, has had its Hay Day. That refers to good days when they stood for and did good things. For the RepulbliCons I would say Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt were good leaders and had good results. For the Democrats I would say the peak was Obama. The low point was Jim Crow. LBJ brought the Dems out of the Swamp. He and Harry Truman were both good. The low point is back with the Nazi wing called the Gang of Four and the ones who sow seeds of total socialism. End Food Stamps as we know it. Or as some know it. There are no longer “stamps” they give out the money with a no pay back gift card.

    1. Lib, U B NUTS! Great Society? LBJ’s welfare plantation? Dimms are the swamp & now some Repubs have been infected, like McCain, Romney, Flake, sometimes L Graham & others. If 0bama was the peak, you are standing upside down. Most everyone you cited was welfare & big government. Sheesh. Dude, we are NOT that dumb!

      Next you’ll tell us the Dimm party formed to help free slaves & the Repubs fought against their freedom, though the opposite is true.


      1. I would be for the party of Abe Lincoln. We do not have a party which I can favor or belong. Both parties like the military industrial complex. Ike warned us about that when he left office. We need a new party. Maybe the one in California called The Beach Party will move forward.

  4. Young Republicans show the effectiveness of communist control of American education wherein propaganda and indoctrination dominate the curricula.

    Decertify all lazy, greedy, striking, thug teachers and professors unions and throw the members in prison for child abuse, corruption and fraud.

    $1.5 trillion in student loan debt is the result of communistic redistribution of wealth to teacher/professors. Why are there Range Rovers and Mercedes Benzes in teachers parking lots? Why are other public workers awarded “comparable pay” after teachers and professors strike? Striking teachers/professors are the “tip of the spear” for the communists. Have teachers/professors generated even a modicum of wealth? Have teachers transformed the inner city low IQ students into Einsteins? What is the product of teachers when statistically assessed? Answer: Failure and corrupt attempts to mitigate and hide that failure. The pay of public workers dwarfs that of the taxpayers who pay their salaries as workers in the private sector. Why? The answer: Communist redistribution of wealth operations, most certainly not free market supply and demand.

  5. Here is another example. The people of Alaska requested that their timber resources be utilized, as per the stewardship agreement of the Forest Service. The timber industry has suffered declines, mills have closed, and unemployment is high.

    Headlines read, Trump does not care about the environment, and wages war on trees.

    That is not the way to hash out problems or come to any solution. It’s the way to alienate and divide. If that’s the media’s goal, then they’re doing fine.

  6. Of course Republicans are concerned about the environment. I this a question? We all breath the same air, and drink the same water.

    One of the difficulties in polls is nuance. Asked if they care about the environment, many would say yes. Asked if they would accept intermittent power outages, unaffordable energy costs, and having to grow and hunt their own food in order to abolish fossil fuels, and many would say no. My own energy bill has doubled since the utility company brought in more solar and wind energy, and that’s even with supplementation with fossil fuels. Were it to totally be replaced, the cost would be higher, and we would have Third World Power outages. As it is, we already have rolling blackouts, when the grid is overtaxed or when the fire hazard is high. They don’t want to be sued like PG&E after the Paradise Fires.

    Solar works during the day. Wind farms only get electricity when the wind blows. It costs millions of dollars to create commercial batters capable of storing hours worth of electricity. Not a season’s worth. Hours. Fossil fuels keep the lights on, and the costs down. Solar and Wind can supplement that, but at increased cost, less reliability, and are inadequate to fuel the grid. It is highly likely that nuclear energy is the cleanest fuel source, and there have been innovative improvements in dealing with the radioactive waste.

    The moral of the story is to take poll results with a grain of salt, and don’t assume half of America does not care about the environment.

    1. What a crock from Karen. What exactly has the GOP done to protect the environment in the last 20 years?

      What they have done is fought to weaken virtually all efforts to protect it.

    1. Polling is the most unreliable method of placing values on environmental goods. A resource economist explained it to me thus: (1) talk is cheap and (2) economists do not have the skill set to conduct valid survey research, and have to team up with psychologists and sociologists to do that; the problem there is that it’s quite challenging to get a respondent to answer your question. They answer their question. So, you ask, how much would you pay to clean up Schitt’s Creek, and they give you an answer derived from their irritation about their local property taxes or about what ever flotsam and jetsam is in their head. To understand what people will pay, look at what they spend their money on. Trouble is, environmental services are not traded (and are largely untradeable).

      There’s a resource economist at Oak Ridge who supposedly has a sophisticated evaluation method which improves on an older generation of methods. I’ve met the guy but cannot remember his name.

      1. Mr. Market asks no questions and gives perfect answers invariably.

        The problem with communist dictators is their deceit.

        “Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!”

        – Sir Walter Scott

    2. That’s a good point, but my concern is the average voter is motivated by inch deep thinking. This is the Democrats base and they know it.

  7. Trump and others have made the party synonymous with climate change denial and anti-environmental protection.

    No they haven’t. You and your Democrat cohorts have been the driver of that narrative because you have no respect for our federalist system. It’s understandable how you might not trust state and local governments to effectively manage their own resources given the abysmal performance of many Democrat-controlled governments. Stop projecting that incompetence on Republican-controlled locals and clean your own house first.

    1. nick, it’s more like the Indoctrination Industry. Are these the same kind of polls that said HRC would beat Prez Trump badly? LOL!

      If the poll was true, all that it proves it that some people don’t do research but are told what to think by those who want to take the USA down. Climate change? It changes all the time. Man is about the smallest player in the climate theater.

      The biggest player in earth’s climate is the sun. Anyone want to comment on the slowdown of the sun’s surface activity?

      Take the US down? Read up on Strategy, by Cloward & Piven. Rules For Radicals, dedicated to lucifer by Saul Alinsky. Learn about how we got the ‘Federal’ Reserve in The Creature From Jekyll Island. Then research who actually owns the ‘Fed’. It ain’t US.

      The planet faces a far more dangerous threat than the contrived to give government more power & control ‘man caused global warming so called ‘crisis’. Opps. They changed it to ‘climate change’. My my. All these people are sooo serious about melting icecaps, rising oceans, polar bears & so on that some buy homes on beachfronts & scurry about in jet planes & are driven around in limousines as they warn the world that the sky is burning, the sky is burning.

      It’s so very important an issue the hypocrites say, that to help solve ‘climate change’ we MUST give government more power & control & pay more taxes to combat the problem.

      Do I hear AOC in the wings? Better be quick, we only have 12 years left or we’ll all die. I think the poor child & those who give her heed are products of the Education & Media Indoctrination Complexes.


  8. The assumption is that Republicans simply do not support the environment, an assumption that I have always contested.

    No, the assumption is that there are costs and benefits to every sort of human activity, a notion lawyers frequently fail to understand but which economists and businessmen commonly do.

    The administration would do well to have a task force on deck to address structural problems in allocating natural resources. I doubt they have. The administration is pretty atheoretical and messy.

  9. “numbers showing up for younger Republicans should worry the leadership.”

    Why should that worry them? Such concerns are not in opposition to Republican values. They are in opposition to statism and corporatism.

  10. Shhhhhh! Trump and the GOP leadership think being against the future and against gun control are winning issues.

    1. Anon, depends on what you have in mind for the future. We want the Constitution & Bill of Rights back for our future. We want smaller government, fewer taxes, govt spending CUT. For starters.

      Dimm progs don’t.

      They want total govt control. That’s why among other things, they promote ‘global warming’, now the ‘Green New Deal’. Sure, dim progs want free speech, IF it’s in line with THEM. Otherwise they have antifa to stifle opposing voices to their crap ‘agenda’. They have antifa now to take over from the KKK, their older enforcement arm, That future is not very bright…

      Gun control? Oh yeah, I forgot that standing up for the 1st & 2nd Amendments were no longer cool with the Dimm power hungry.


      1. So I guess it’s perfectly ok to dump 3o billion tons of co2 into the Sm atmosphere every year.

Comments are closed.