• A new poll found that those who are climate deniers also tend to dismiss coronavirus.
  • Pakistan’s government creates more than 60,000 tree-planting jobs.
  • US presidential candidate Joe Biden discusses the climate crisis with Jay Inslee on his podcast.
  • And more…

Electrek, By Bradley Berman

© Electrek | Climate skeptics are also likely to be COVID skeptics

Global survey research data company Morning Consult took a poll and published the results, titled, “How Concern Over Climate Change Correlates With Coronavirus Responses.”

The poll was conducted online between April 14-16 on a national sample of 2,200 adults. Here are some of the results:
  • 54% of climate-concerned respondents said that they have “always” worn a mask in public spaces over the last month.
  • 30% of the climate-unconcerned said that they have “always” worn a mask in public spaces over the last month.
  • 86% of the climate-concerned practiced social distancing.
  • 72% of the climate-unconcerned practiced social distancing.
The “climate-concerned” group was defined as those who said that they are concerned about climate change and agree with the scientific consensus that climate change is caused by human activity. The climate-unconcerned group was defined as those who said they were either “not too concerned” or “not concerned at all” about climate change.
So why the disparity? Emma Frances Bloomfield, assistant professor in communication studies at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, explains:
Everything that science asks us to do is really sacrificing personal convenience for community convenience and well-being. And for a lot of people, the coronavirus is invisible, just like climate change is invisible. A lot of people don’t know people who have been directly affected, and in the case of climate change, a lot of the more severe effects are still years away.
Protesters in Lansing, Michigan, stormed the state Capitol on Thursday because, as they told local news, the coronavirus “isn’t real.” As of Thursday, the state of Michigan had 41,379 cases of the coronavirus with 3,789 deaths. It’d be interesting to know if the protesters in Lansing think climate change is real.

Laborers who have lost their jobs in Pakistan have been given new paid roles by the government: planting trees. The nearly 64,000 “jungle workers” are setting up nurseries, planting saplings, and serving as forest firefighters as part of Pakistan’s 10 Billion Tree Tsunami program. Prime Minister Imran Khan launched the program in 2018 to counter climate change and prioritized hiring women and gig workers.

The laborers are making half of their usual wages — 500 rupees ($3) a day — but it’s enough to survive in Pakistan. All workers must wear masks and maintain social distancing.

The Global Climate Risk Index 2020, issued by think-tank Germanwatch, ranked Pakistan fifth on a list of countries most affected by planetary heating over the last 20 years — even though the South Asian nation contributes only a fraction of global greenhouse gases.
This is a great example of how stimulus programs can address both the pandemic economic crisis and the climate crisis.

This article was originally published by Electrek.
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