The Reader: Climate Change Opportunities in Six Maps

On March 21, the New York Times published “How Americans Think About Climate Change, in Six Maps.” The piece shows that more than 50% of Americans in every single U.S. congressional district “want to reduce carbon emissions from coal power plants.”

The piece also shows numbers of people who (1) believe global warming will impact people in the U.S., (2) believe global warming will impact them, and (3) how much people talk about global warming relative to a national average.

Consider this map in the context of the 2018 midterms (the Times’ interactive 2016 election results map is available here). Are there places where Democrats could make global warming a wedge issue to their benefit?

Take the Colorado 3rd (disclaimer: we have not followed past political discussions in this district). Based on the Times’ maps, it appears that more than 60% of Americans in the Colorado 3rd want to reduce emissions from coal plants; between 50% and 70% of residents — depending on location within the district — believe global warming will harm people in the U.S.; and most district residents discuss global warming significantly more than the average American.

Despite this, the Colorado 3rd is represented by a congressman who has a history of denying a human role in global warming. But he only won with 54% of the vote in 2016.

These maps present useful data with which Democrats could shift the conversation around global warming.

The Reader is a series of posts on American Indivisible that shares a link or a summary of compelling ideas we read or heard.