As scientists continue to sound the alarm on global warming and its alleged discontents, it seems at least one sector is unconvinced that the phenomenon is actually unfolding. In sum, 54 percent of Protestant pastors consulted by LifeWay Research rejected the notion that “global warming is real and man-made,” with 43 percent agreeing with this sentiment.
Not surprisingly, there are some partisan differences worth noting. While 75 percent of Democratically-aligned faith leaders strongly agree that global warming is real and man-made, only 20 percent of Independents and seven percent of Republican pastors believe the same.
GOP-aligned preachers are also the most likely to strongly disagree, with 49 percent falling into this category; only five percent of pastors who call themselves political Democrats strongly reject global warming as a man-made phenomenon. Here are some of LifeWay’s other demographic findings:
- Pastors in large cities (32 percent) are more likely to strongly agree with the statement than pastors in small cities (20 percent) and rural areas (18 percent);
- Southern pastors are less likely (18 percent) to strongly agree with the statement than pastors in the Northeast (30 percent) and West (25 percent);
- Self-identified mainline pastors are more likely than self-identified evangelical pastors to strongly agree (35 percent vs. 15 percent) with the statement.
Overall, though, 63 percent of faith leaders reported having an active recycling program at their churches. And 45 percent of those interviewed said that their house of worship was taking action to curb carbon impact. Of course, demographics play a role in determining these results as well (read the complete explanation of findings here).
Conducted between Sept. 26 and Oct. 3, 1,000 phone interviews with a random sample of Protestant faith leaders were used in gathering the results. Sampling error did not exceed +/- 3.2 percentage points.
What do you think? Is global warming real? Is it man-made? Take our poll, below.