Ten years ago, energy security may have been as much a driving force behind electric cars for U.S. policymakers as climate change.
Now, with continuous growth in domestic oil and gas production over that period, you just don't hear energy security discussed as much.
Scientists agree that the effects of manmade climate change, on the other hand, are increasingly visible in stronger hurricanes, atypical weather patterns, and the like.
The news on climate change has not been particularly good of late—even abstracting the U.S. politics around the issue. (The rest of the world does not question the scientific consensus.)
New modeling seems to show that the most accurate climate models predict the most extreme future effects, for instance.
So we were curious to see how our Twitter followers felt about climate change, specifically how optimistic they may be about the world's chances of addressing it in a meaningful way and averting its most dire consequences.
On efforts to address climate-change impacts, are you?— Green Car Reports (@GreenCarReports) January 3, 2018
We've offered four choices participants can choose from to indicate their attitudes toward efforts to address global climate change.
They range from "confident we can do it" on the optimistic side to "hopeless" on the pessimistic end of the scale.
We'll be curious to see how this one comes out, as policymakers today have largely proposed regulations, programs, and efforts to reduce carbon emissions for years and decades to come in the assumption the worst effects can be contained.
The scientific consensus is that limiting the rise in global temperature to 2 degrees C will be necessary to avert those dire consequences.
Global carbon dioxide emissions, 1850-2030 [CO2 Information Analysis Center, World Energy Outlook]
The challenge, of course, is that humanity is conducting a real-time experiment on radically altering its home planet that may produce unpredictable, perhaps unimaginable, consequences.
The graph above of the rising atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide indicates just how much of the climate-change gas we have produced and emitted in a very short period of time.
Our poll question this week is essentially one of outlook and attitude rather than one that can be debated based on science or data.
We're curious to know whether our Twitter followers who choose to take part in this poll are fundamentally optimists ... or not.
As always, please note that our Twitter polls are far from scientifically valid, due to small sample size and self-selection by those who choose to participate.
Green Car Reports respectfully reminds its readers that the scientific validity of climate change is not a topic for debate in our comments. We ask that any comments by climate-change denialists be flagged for moderation. We also ask that political discussions be restricted to the topic of the article they follow. Thank you in advance for helping us keep our comments on topic, civil, respectful, family-friendly, and fact-based.