A recent United Nations report acknowledges that solar activity may have a bigger impact on climate change than previously thought. Most voters agree that activity on the Sun is likely to have an impact on the temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere, but even more think human activity is a likely factor.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 60% of Likely Voters believe it is at least somewhat likely that the level of activity on the Sun – including solar flares and sun spots – has an impact on the long-term heating and cooling of the Earth’s atmosphere. Only slightly more (66%) think it's likely human activity has a similar long-term impact.
But while these findings include 30% who feel solar activity is Very Likely to have an impact on the atmosphere's temperature, 41% think human activity is Very Likely to be a factor.
Twenty-one percent (21%) of voters believe activity on the Sun is not likely to have an impact on the long-term heating and cooling of the Earth's atmosphere, with five percent (5%) who say it’s Not At All Likely. Twenty-six percent (26%) don’t see human activity as a likely factor, including nine percent (9%) who say it’s Not At All Likely. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided about solar activity, compared to seven percent (7%) when it comes to human activity. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on February 4-5, 2013 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
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