New Poll: Arizonans Support Clean Air and Climate Action More than Ever

Arizonans are increasingly alarmed by air pollution and climate change and want policymakers to do more.

Today, the American Lung Association in Arizona released updated polling that shows Arizona voters continue to support strong actions on clean air and climate change. Arizonans also overwhelmingly want to see policies to boost clean energy and solidly support efforts to encourage the transition to pollution-free vehicles.

“Arizona has some of the worst air pollution in the U.S., which creates a myriad of respiratory and cardiovascular concerns. This year’s poll again highlights opportunities to address these issues,” said JoAnna Strother, senior advocacy director for the American Lung Association. “Investments in renewable energy, like wind and solar, are strongly supported by Arizona voters, and 77 percent of voters believe a transition to zero-emission vehicles will have a positive impact on air quality in Arizona.”

Global Strategy group has been conducting annual polls on clean air, clean energy, and climate issues in Arizona for the last four years. This year’s survey finds that more voters now consider both air pollution (83%) and climate change (80%) to be serious problems, the highest such responses to date. Meanwhile, 71% of voters now agree that “climate change is having a serious impact on this part of the country” and 70% agree that “Arizona policymakers need to do more to combat climate change” – up from 65% and 62% respectively last year.

“Our air pollution and climate crises are undeniable,” said Strother. “Arizona voters understand this and want to see our decisionmakers do more to reduce pollution and protect health. This polling highlights both the need and desire for zero-emission policies that will have significant benefits to Arizona’s economy and public heath.”

The poll also showed continued support for an increase in renewable energy, with 74% of voters supportive of more solar and 61% supportive of more wind power. A strong majority of voters (57% to 31%) also agree that the state “should implement policies that encourage a transition to zero-emission vehicles.” Respondents believe such policies will have positive impacts on air quality (77% positive vs. 12% negative) and climate change (70%/13%), as well as the health of their families (67%/17%), seniors and children (60%/26%), and jobs and the economy (59%/28%). Voters also say that they would feel more favorably towards policymakers who support policies that encourage a transition to pollution-free vehicles (51% more favorable/22% less favorable).

“The transportation sector is the primary source of unhealthy emissions, and transitioning toward zero-emission vehicles will reduce the risk of asthma attacks, heart attacks, strokes, and even premature deaths,” said Strother. “Policies that clean up emissions from vehicles have a majority of voter support, including strong support for electrification of school buses, and the broader medium and heavy-duty sector.”

The poll further finds that specific policies to encourage the use of more zero-emission vehicles have majority of voter support even after a balanced debate:

  • Over two-thirds of voters (67%) support investments to transition all school buses from diesel-powered vehicles to zero-emission buses by 2040.
  • 65% of voters support investments for charging infrastructure along major highways and roads.
  • 64% of voters support consumer incentives to purchase electric vehicles.
  • Majority of voters support policies that transition to pollution-free vehicles including decreasing emissions from cars and truck over time (62% support), electrifying the medium and heavy-duty sector by 2040 (62% support), and transitioning public fleet vehicles to zero-emission by 2035 (59% support).

“After hearing strong arguments from both supporters and opponents, Arizona voters continue to support a wide range of policies to expand the use of zero-emission technologies” said Andrew Baumann of Global Strategy Group. “Arizona voters across the political spectrum want their policy makers to act to boost clean energy, and healthier transportation options.”

An analysis memo from Global Strategy Group can be found online here, along with the questionnaire used.

For media interested in speaking with local air quality or lung health professionals, please contact the American Lung Association at [email protected].

For more information, contact:

Arizona Media Contact

[email protected]

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