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The Pew Research center asked 10,156 U.S. adults how concerned they are about climate change. This is what they found.

A new study has revealed that Christian Americans are less worried about climate change, despite believing that the Earth is sacred.


A report from the Pew Research Center surveyed 10,156 U.S. adults from April 11 to April 17. They found that only 52 percent of religiously affiliated individuals believe climate change is a serious problem, as opposed to 70 percent of religiously unaffiliated individuals. Around 10 percent do not believe in climate change at all.

An even larger amount, 80 percent, express a sense of stewardship towards the Earth, agreeing with the idea that “God gave humans a duty to protect and care for the Earth, including the plants and animals.”

The study added that while religion does not largely influence public opinion, it is typically aligned with conservative politics, which do affect discourse.

"The main driver of U.S. public opinion about the climate is political party, not religion," the report reads. "Highly religious Americans are more inclined than others to identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, and Republicans tend to be much less likely than Democrats to believe that human activity (such as burning fossil fuels) is warming the Earth or to consider climate change a serious problem."

Of the denominations, race also played a part in how members see the environment. Historically Black churches were much more likely to be concerned about climate change at 68 percent, whereas the percentage of evangelicals who are concerned falls to 34 percent.

Those who reported no concern towards climate change instead said “there are much bigger problems in the world, that God is in control of the climate, and that they do not believe the climate is actually changing.”

Reverend Fletcher Harper, an Episcopal priest and executive director of global multi-faith environmental organization GreenFaith, told The Associated Press that the results were not surprising, as even religious individuals who believe in climate change do not tend to prioritize combatting it.

According to the Pew Research study, only 8 percent of those surveyed said they “hear a great deal or quite a bit about climate change in sermons.”

But Harper added: “What this study doesn’t tell us, though, is the role that religion, when utilized effectively, can play in moving people who are concerned but inactive into public action on the climate’s behalf. This warrants further research so that we can all understand better what positive role religion can play in the fight against climate change.”

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