Monday, January 18, 2010


An online survey of the Herald Readers' Panel was conducted by the Nielsen Company between December 10 and December 17, as world leaders prepared to meet at the UN climate conference in Copenhagen.

Thirty-eight per cent said global warming was a serious problem that needed action now, 13 per cent said it was the world's biggest challenge, and 2 per cent did not know.

Nineteen per cent - including almost 30 per cent of men aged 45 or older - thought it was a giant con and a waste of money.

The findings are at odds with a telephone survey of 500 people a few weeks earlier paid for by the Greenhouse Policy Coalition and carried out by UMR research the week after damaging emails from an international group of climate scientists were taken from the University of East Anglia's climate research unit and leaked on to the internet
What does this survey tell us? It tells that members of the Herald Reader Panel, a self-selecting group, have different views to those of the general public, as revealed by the UMR poll. What it does not tell us is that "almost half of New Zealanders are not convinced global warming is real."

Our next guests will be introduced by Mr Peter Cook:


Grace Dalley said...

It amazes me that so often climate change is treated like an issue for democratic debate, where uninformed opinion counts for something. If some of the public doesn't believe it that's really beside the point.

This is why we have scientists to tell us what the facts are.

Paul said...

I remember that, during the Cold War, people were polled on the likelyhood of nuclear war breaking out. The majority thought it likely, so the media concluded that it would happen. This struck me as peculiar.

Rusty said...

They're at it again today. Mr Duncan has been promoted to the Opinion section, naturally spouting the results of that there shonky survey.

Clearly scientific method escapes the man.

Peter in Dundee said...

Indeed this idea that scientific facts are amenable to democratic voting is a common trope. I am reminded of whichever US State it was that tried to legislate that pi be equal to exactly 3.

This would be fine if it was only their children and grandchildren who would suffer in a warming, unsustainable world. I know this is illiberal but can we pass a law that anyone who has stated that they do not 'believe' in AGW loses the right to vote? The issue is that important that they cannot be allowed to prevent a proper response.

Here in the UK a fight is looming between the attempt by David Cameron and his clique to try and out green the Greens and the increasingly 'sceptical' opinions of the rank and file, of the parliamentarians and MEPs, let alone ordinary party members. Apparently a lot of them wre actually persuaded by the artificial smear of the leaked emails.

Some people are too gullible to be allowed out unaccompanied.

Paul said...

Perhaps we could have some trick referendum questions, to catch those who might do damage with their vote. A trap door in the floor of the voting booth might also be useful.