From: Peter Henderson, Reuters
Published July 30, 2009 06:33 AM

Californians' Cooling on Global Warming

The tough economy has undermined the environmental enthusiasm of Californians, hitting the U.S. state that pioneered climate change legislation just as the federal government is taking on the issue, a survey showed on Wednesday.

The poll by the Public Policy Institute of California shows support for urgent action on climate change has split on political lines, with a third of respondents from the more conservative Republican Party now saying global warming will never happen.

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Total support for the state's climate change law, a model for federal bills being debated, dropped to 66 percent from 73 percent last year. Meanwhile, the state has been reduced to issuing IOUs as unemployment has spiked to a new high.

Greater state partisanship may reflect the national debate as the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate consider climate change rules, but concerns about the economy could also presage deteriorating support for national action, the institute said.

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