Anyone who’s been paying attention for the past five years — which excludes most politicians and media — knows Canadians are more concerned about air, water and soil pollution than climate change.
Those aren’t just the findings of an Abacus Data poll released by the Toronto Sun and QMI Agency last week.
They’ve been consistent going back to at least January 2007, when a poll by The Strategic Counsel for CTV News and the Globe and Mail, found the same thing, albeit by asking the questions in a different way.
In the latest poll of 1,008 adults conducted May 15-16, Abacus found 55% of Canadians worry “a great deal” about the pollution of drinking water.
This is followed by the pollution of rivers, lakes and reservoirs (51%), the contamination of soil and water by toxic waste (46%), and air pollution and smog (40%).
Bringing up the rear are the more exotic environmental issues they’re constantly being told by all the usual suspects from Al Gore to Sting they SHOULD care most about, global warming, species extinction and loss of the rain forests, each at 33%.
To be sure, in every one of the seven categories surveyed, more Canadians said they were concerned “a great deal” or “a fair amount” about these issues, compared to those who said they were concerned “only a little” or “not at all.”
But the fact remains despite years of political, media and environmental hysteria about global warming, Canadians care more about environmental issues they see as directly affecting their own health.
The same was true five years ago, when the Strategic Counsel found more Canadians considered toxic chemicals (61%), air pollution and smog (55%), and water pollution and quality (54%), more life threatening than global warming (52%).
Ironically, that poll, done at the height of media hysteria over global warming, was part of a massive package the Globe prepared for its Saturday, January 27, 2007 edition, kicked off by its line story “Welcome to the new climate”.
It declared climate change was the biggest environmental issue of the new millennium.
Um, nope. Not even according to its own poll at the time.