Monday, February 6, 2023

Play

Fare-free public transit benefits Kansas City residents and businesses; farmers prioritize food, not feed in the 2023 Farm Bill; and a new survey: students want a more diverse inclusive curriculum.

Play

The Democratic National Committee votes to shake up the presidential primary calendar, President Biden gets a better than expected jobs report before his second State of the Union, and lawmakers from both parties question the response to a Chinese data gathering balloon.

Play

Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

Voters in AZ, West Worried About Water, Climate Change

Play

Monday, February 21, 2022   

Voters in Arizona and across the West are increasingly concerned about the effects of climate change on the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains. That's the main message from the 12th annual Conservation in the West Poll by Colorado College.

The poll found voters in the eight Western states along the Continental Divide are troubled over issues like drought, inadequate water supplies, wildfires, and the loss of wildlife habitats and natural spaces.

Pollster and Principal at the firm New Bridge Strategy, Lori Weigel, said most of the 3,400 people polled said they fear for the future of the land.

"Climate change was the number one reason that people were telling us that they were feeling pessimistic," said Weigel. "I have no doubt a majority in every single state was telling us that they are feeling more worried than more hopeful when they think about the future of nature."

In Arizona, almost 70% of respondents shared that concern. And 84% of Arizonans said politicians' position on the environment is either "important or very important" in whether they support a candidate for office.

Pollster and Principal & President at the firm Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates - Dave Metz - said public officials pay a great deal of attention to the annual poll in making decisions on conservation issues.

He said the survey gives lawmakers a clearer view of how most people feel, as opposed to a small group that may be passionate on a particular issue.

"That small, vocal group can sometimes have an outsized presence in an elected official's mind," said Metz. "And the poll can sometimes say, 'No, that's not the case - that in fact, there is a different opinion that may not be as vocally shared but is broadly held.'"

Metz said water is a major concern, with drought and reduced snowpack eliciting the strongest levels of anxiety. Other issues included more frequent and severe wildfires, air quality, extreme heat and extreme weather.

Pollsters say they made an extra effort this year to include Native Americans and people of color, over-sampling several groups to gauge their concerns.

Shanna Edberg, director of conservation programs for the Hispanic Access Foundation, said marginalized communities are often the most affected by the climate.

"Latinos have this clear vision of the way forward in protecting the environment," said Edberg, "because it is Latino health, homes and jobs that are largely at stake. When Latino children are twice as likely as white children to die of asthma, reducing air pollution is a matter of life and death for our communities."

The full Conservation in the West Poll results are online at 'ColoradoCollege.edu.'


get more stories like this via email
Michigan environmental activists have begun to focus on environmental justice issues in low-income communities that bear the brunt of industrial pollution and political indifference. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

By Tom Perkins for Planet Detroit.Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for Michigan News Connection with support from the Solutions Journalism Network…


Environment

By Jared Brey for Governing.Broadcast version by Deborah Van Fleet for Missouri News Service reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Public New…

Social Issues

South Dakota is once again locked in a debate over a bill concerning transgender youth. It seeks to ban gender-affirming care, with supporters …


Voters in Pittsburgh-area districts 32, 34 and 35 will head to the polls Tuesday to fill three vacancies in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. (MoiraM/AdobeStock)

Social Issues

While the Pennsylvania House is still out of session and won't resume until late February, the public and advocacy groups are voicing their concerns…

Social Issues

Better health and educational outcomes are being touted as the potential benefits as Minnesota lawmakers discuss whether to provide free school meals …

Sixty schools piloted College Board's new AP African American Studies course, which is set to appear in over 200 schools starting in the 2024-2025 school year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

CORRECTION: YouthTruth surveyed more than 28,000 high school seniors from the class of 2022 and the class of 2019 in 19 states, including New York…

Social Issues

For more than two decades, a workforce development program in El Paso has invested in the economically disadvantaged to help them attain the …

Health and Wellness

Nebraska's long-term care facilities face staffing shortages and other factors that could lead to more closures if state funding isn't increased…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021