Politics Fewer Americans prioritizing environment over economic growth in recent years: Gallup
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The percentage of Americans who prioritize protecting the environment over strengthening the economy has dropped in recent years, according to a new poll.
The Gallup surveyshowed that 50 percent of adults in the U.S. say "protection of the environment should be given priority, even at the risk of curbing economic growth." That percentage is down from 60 percent who said the same early last year and 65 percent in 2019.
The new survey found that 42 percent of U.S. adults said that "economic growth should be given priority, even if the environment suffers to some extent." That percentage is up from 30 percent who agreed in 2019.
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Gallup noted that Americans' views on protecting the environment, even "at the risk of curbing economic growth," typically reflects the unemployment rate in the country, with more survey respondents choosing the economy as unemployment ticks up.
The unemployment rate has been higher in 2020 and 2021 than in recent years in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic's impact on businesses across the country.
When broken down by party, Republican voters are significantly more likely to prioritize the economy over the environment when asked to pick between the two. Sixty-eight percent of Republicans chose "economic growth" rather than "protection of the environment" in in the poll released Thursday, compared to 23 percent of Democrats who agreed.
President Biden has long viewed his climate plan as part of a larger economic vision. Biden during his presidential campaign said his administration's response to climate change
The Gallup survey was conducted March 1-15 with a random sample of 1,010 adults in the U.S. The margin of sampling error is 4 percentage points.
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The Biden-Harris administration should not be timid in pursuing its agenda — no matter how loud the bad faith protests from regulatory critics might be — because it has the public on its side. Sidney Shapiro is the Frank U. Fletcher chair in law, Wake Forest University and the vice president of the Center for Progressive Reform.