PHOENIX, AZ | July 15, 2021
Today, the American Lung Association released new poll results showing that an overwhelming majority (69%) of Arizona voters – across all major demographic groups – support investment in zero-emission buses for students nationwide. The statewide support for zero-emission buses in Arizona aligns with polling results nationwide, where an overwhelming majority of voters (68%) support the transition to zero-emission buses.
The poll findings are released as Congress considers a major infrastructure package including a proposal to invest $20 billion to transition one-fifth of the country’s school buses from diesel-powered vehicles to electric, zero-emission buses. The findings also come just days after the Cartwright Elementary School District became the first school district in Arizona to operate an 84-passenger electric school bus.
“Hundreds of thousands of young Arizonans ride to school on diesel-powered school buses that emit an enormous amount of pollution,” said JoAnna Strother, Senior Advocacy Director of the American Lung Association in Arizona. “The toxic pollution in diesel exhaust can trigger asthma attacks and even worsen the condition for the more than 132,000 children in our state who suffer from asthma. Our children should be able to get to and from school without being forced to inhale these dangerous exhaust fumes every day.”
"It is imperative that we do everything we can protect our kids from diesel pollution that can cause long lasting health effects," said Corey Woods, Mayor of Tempe. "As Mayor and a person who has suffered from asthma since childhood, I know that we have to do more to protect public health. I've read the disturbing statistics about air pollution and asthma attacks in our state. Arizonans are smart, and we know that investing in zero-emission school buses will make our students, our cities, and our state healthier."
Earlier this week, Mayor Woods joined over 140 mayors from cities across Arizona and nationwide in calling on congressional leadership to push for aggressive climate measures in the proposed American Jobs Plan. The group of mayors urged Congress to provide at least $20 billion over five years for electric school buses.
Mayor Woods’ sentiment is shared by the majority of Arizona voters. The recent poll, administered by Global Strategy Group, showed that a majority of Arizona voters believe that transitioning to zero-emission school buses will spur American innovation, benefit the health of our children, and help effectively combat climate change.
Key findings from the poll include:
- 69% of Arizona voters support proposal to invest $20 billion in the transition from diesel-powered vehicles to zero-emission school buses.
- 67% of Arizona voters believe that transitioning school buses from diesel vehicles to zero-emission buses would have a positive impact on the air quality in their communities.
- 65% of Arizona voters believe that transitioning the national school bus fleet to be zero-emission would have a positive impact on the health of America’s school children.
- 86% of Arizona voters agree that reducing air pollution around children is common sense — not a Republican or Democratic issue.
“Support for the transition to zero-emission buses is overwhelming and broad and remains robust even after voters heard simulated arguments from both sides,” said Andrew Baumann, Senior Vice President at Global Strategy Group.
The analysis memo from Global Strategy Group can be found online here.
Global Strategy Group conducted 414 interviews with Arizona voters (confidence interval of +/-4.8%) and conducted an online survey of 1,005 registered voters nationwide between July 1 -8, 2021. The survey had a confidence interval of +/-3.1%. Care has been taken to ensure the geographic, demographic, and political divisions among registered voters are properly represented.
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, which has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and is a Platinum-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.