Warming cause of disasters, say most Americans
WASHINGTON — After hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria blitzed the nation, most Americans think weather disasters are getting more severe and see global warming’s fingerprints.
A new poll from the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research finds that 68 percent of Americans think weather disasters seem to be worsening, compared to 28 percent who think they are staying the same and only 4 percent who say they are less severe.
And 46 percent of those who think it’s getting worse blame manmade climate change mostly or solely for the wild weather, while another 39 percent say it’s a combination of global warming and natural variability.
Two-thirds of Americans disapprove of the way President Trump is handling climate change. That’s similar to his approval rating overall.
This year so far has seen 15 weather disasters that cost $1 billion or more, tied for the most in the first nine months of the year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
An analysis of 167 years of federal storm data by The Associated Press finds that no 30year period in history has experienced this many major hurricanes, this many days of those storms spinning in the Atlantic, or this much overall energy generated by those powerful storms.