It's been a little over a month since President Obama announced that he's not waiting for Congress to do something about climate change and Americans seem to be glad he's doing it. That's the result of the first poll of voters since the president unveiled his Climate Action Plan.
The poll, conducted by Hart Research Associates and Chesapeake Beach Consulting for the Naturla Resources Defense Council, found strong bipartisan support with 61 percent if respondents approving of the plan--with a reported 68 percent from the Midwest.
Howard Learner with the Environmental Law and Policy Center says he expects to support to grow even stronger, "as people see that cars and trucks are becoming more efficient, as people see some of the old coal plant dinosaurs either cleaning up or retiring, I think you're going to see a lot of members of the public saying this makes sense." Even after being given the arguments for and against the plan, the voters supported it by a nearly two to one margin.
In addition to telling the voters that the plan will limit pollution from power plants as well as boost fuel efficiency in vehicles and energy efficiency in homes, the voters were told that the plan will invest more in wind and solar power generation. And they approved.
Learner said Illinois is one of many states that will benefit economically. "You know, the Midwest and the Great Plains are the Saudi Arabia of wind power," he said. "Iowa is the number two state in the country in terms of installed wind power development, Illinois is number four, Minnesota is number six." He said the Dakotas are producing more wind power as well. Meanwhile according to the Defense Council's website: http://www.nrdc.org, Indiana was ranked in the Top 20 states but is the third-fastest growing state in wind energy capacity
Learner sees the president's Climate Action plan as an important kick starter for the clean-energy industry. Even though the poll showed bipartisan support for most elements in the plan, Senate Republicans have introduced legislation to stop the EPA from regulating carbon emissions from power plants.
Poll results and more information is at ELPC.org.