New Poll Shows 7 in 10 Voters Support EPA Action to Clean Up Truck Pollution

American Lung Association releases new poll that gives insight on voters’ opinions on cleaning up truck pollution and related impacts on health, environment

Today, the American Lung Association released new poll results that show voters overwhelmingly support the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) efforts to implement stronger limits on carbon pollution from new trucks and buses. The poll findings are released as EPA is expected to soon finalize limits on greenhouse gas emissions from heavy-duty vehicles. 

“The public understands that truck pollution is harming their health and driving climate change. This new poll shows that the vast majority of voters support EPA taking action to clean up heavy-duty vehicles,” said Harold Wimmer, President and CEO of the American Lung Association.

Administered by Global Strategy Group, the poll showed that 72% of voters support EPA implementing stronger limits on carbon emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, like tractor trailers, buses and delivery vans. 

Key findings from the poll include:  

  • 72% of voters nationwide support EPA setting stricter limits on carbon emissions from heavy-duty vehicles. 
    • At least three in four Black (78%) and Hispanic (75%) voters support these standards.
    • Support for these limits is bipartisan, with majorities across Democratic, Republican and Independent voters.
    • Even after voters hear a simulated debate including arguments opposing the stricter limits, two-thirds continue to support stricter standards (67% support, including 33% strongly support).
  • 76% of voters said that the new limits would have a positive impact on the quality of the air we breathe, and 71% said that it would have a positive impact on future generation of Americans. 
  • Nearly seven in ten voters (69%) agree that new limits would encourage innovation.
  • Voters reject the idea that these new standards would have a negative impact on the cost of living and the economy. 
    • Black voters (50% positive, 21% negative) and Hispanic voters (48% positive, 25% negative) are very positive about the standards’ impact on the economy.

Truck pollution is dangerous for anyone to breathe, but the 72 million Americans living closest to freight routes – and therefore trucking exhaust – face greater risk, and are more likely to be lower-income and people of color. Trucks represent a small fraction of total on-road vehicles but generate the greatest share of harmful air pollutants. 

The poll also found that an overwhelming 83% of voters supported placing a priority on standards that clean up pollution in the most polluted American neighborhoods, with strong support across party lines.

“Strong standards that drive to a zero-emission future for trucks, buses and other heavy-duty vehicles are a critical part of the solution,” said Wimmer. “Cleaning up heavy-duty vehicles helps address climate change and will have immediate health benefits, especially for communities that bear the greatest burden from pollution.”

The poll found support for additional EPA actions to address vehicle pollution including:

  • Most voters (60% support, 30% oppose) support the EPA setting stricter limits on emissions from light-duty vehicles like cars or trucks.
  • Voters support (56% support, 25% oppose) granting waivers to allow California to implement its own, stronger limits on vehicle emissions.

The analysis memo from Global Strategy Group can be found online here. 

Global Strategy Group conducted an online survey of 1600 registered voters nationwide between January 29 and February 5, 2024. The survey had a confidence interval of +/- 2.5%. Care has been taken to ensure the geographic, demographic, and political divisions among registered voters are properly represented. 801 of those voters received questions related to limits on carbon emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, which is the focus of this memo. Those questions have a confidence interval of +/- 3.5%. 

For more information, contact:

Jill Dale
[email protected]

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