Not surprisingly Canadians are enthralled with the controversies surrounding US President Donald Trump and the decision to award Omar Kadr $10 million, but new consumer polling numbers from Abacus Data also indicates that climate change has now become a major concern for Canadians.
According to figures released last week, approximately 55% of Canadians are now “very closely” or “somewhat closely” paying attention to the climate issue. This compares to 58% for jobs and the economy and 52% for the Kadr issue. Trump leads the way with 62%.
The climate change issue has garnered considerable mind share across the country, and across different age groups. While Conservative-leaning voters are less attentive to the issue than Canadians with other political affiliations, about half (49%) still say they are following it very closely or somewhat closely.
Overall, nearly two-thirds of Canadians (64%) believe the federal Liberals are doing a good (16%) or acceptable (48%) job on the climate file. Abacus notes a majority of Canadians in every region of the country, including Alberta (72%) believe the government is doing a good or acceptable job on the climate file. Even a majority of Conservative voters (54%) share this belief.
Bruce Anderson, chair of the board at Abacus Data, says climate change is now a mainstream topic of interest in the country.
“We may have entered something of a new normal in terms of the level of interest in this issue, and the policy choices that governments make around it,” he added.
The Abacus survey was conducted online with 2,036 Canadians aged 18 and over from July 14 to 18, 2017. The margin of error for a comparable probability-based random sample of this size is +/- 2.2%, 19 times out of 20.