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Aug. 7, 2012: Report Says Generation X Is Unconcerned About Climate Change

August 7, 2012
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A new report from the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research finds that Generation X is largely unconcerned about climate change. “Most Generation Xers are surprisingly disengaged, dismissive, or doubtful about whether global climate change is happening and they don’t spend much time worrying about it,” said Jon D. Miller, author of “The Generation X Report.”

Generation X encompasses those adults born between 1961 and 1981, and are now between 32 and 52 years of age.

The new report compares Gen X attitudes about climate change in 2009 and 2011. “We found a small but statistically significant decline between 2009 and 2011 in the level of attention and concern Generation X adults expressed about climate change,” Miller said. “In 2009, about 22 percent said they followed the issue of climate change very or moderately closely. In 2011, only 16 percent said they did so.”

Only about 5 percent of those surveyed in 2011 were alarmed about climate change, and another 18 percent said they were concerned about it. But 66 percent said they aren’t sure that global warming is happening, and about 10 percent said they don’t believe global warming is actually happening.

“This is an interesting and unexpected profile,” Miller said. “Few issues engage a solid majority of adults in our busy and pluralistic society, but the climate issue appears to attract fewer committed activists — on either side — than I would have expected.”

Publication date: 8/6/2012

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