Virginia survey reveals public attitudes on global warming

By Barbara Kessler

Three in four Virginians believe that global warming has been occurred over the past four decades, according to an extensive survey of state opinions, released today by University of Virginia researchers.

A smaller percentage of the populace (39 percent) said that human activity “such as burning fossil fuels” is causing the phenomenon; 33 percent felt global warming was caused by a combination of human factors and natural trends; 20 percent attributed it to “natural patterns” and 8 percent reported they were “not sure” of the causes.

The survey of 660 Virginians, conducted by UV’s Miller Center of Public Affairs and released this week, was devised to better probe residents’ viewpoints on global warming, in light of the fact that states have “taken an unexpectedly central role” in forming climate change policy.