So why do half of adult Americans not believe humans are changing the climate? A Penn State researcher went looking in the nation’s classrooms.
But not at the students. Eric Plutzer asked what their science teachers believe.
Plutzer’s survey of 1,500 middle and high-school science teachers found they are cool to global warming theory.
• While most do teach about climate change, 30 per cent of teachers in the survey said they emphasize that recent global warming “is likely due to natural causes.” This is sharply different from what actual climate scientists say.
• Another 12 per cent downplay the human role, or never mention it at all, the survey found.
Plutzer wondered why this happens and dug deeper.
“It doesn’t seem to be parents or administrators, as very few teachers reported external pressure not to teach climate change,” says the journal Science, which published his study in Friday’s edition.