How have the Trump administration’s environmental and energy policies changed voters’ views?

Trumpism Beyond Trumpism

When the Trump administration announced its intention to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change, many people cheered. The president’s decision to exit was widely seen as a win for climate advocates and a blow to the American coal and gas sectors that helped to power his victory and provide much of the support the administration needed to win the White House. In fact, in a statement to journalists after President Trump’s announcement, one of his aides suggested that withdrawing would “benefit the American economy,” as well as the economy of South Korea and Japan.

This is only part of the story: many people—at least in the mainstream media—have been more critical of the way the Trump administration has treated the environment. But there’s another story to be told that centers on the president’s actions—or lack of them—that have also shaped his support among voters.

The question: How have the administration’s environmental and energy policies changed voters’ views?

To find out, we analyzed the views of registered voters by type (age, gender, education, region, religious affiliation) on the four issues of the Paris Agreement: “climate change,” “green jobs,” “clean energy,” and “clean air and water.” We included the four issues because they are the most central focus for the pro-environment and green voter, and because they are also the four biggest issues facing voters in the race for president.

We then examined how voters’ views varied by party identification and race. We also looked at the effects of the 2016 election on presidential candidate Trump’s and his policies.

These are the findings:

On climate

One thing we found is that the Trump administration’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions has not changed voters’ views on whether climate change is a threat to the United States’ national security but, rather, their views on how urgent it

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