This paper investigates the variations in public mood pertaining to climate skepticism and attempts to empirically assess whether economic recessions or partisanship help explain aggregate-level trends and movements across a 16-year time horizon. Public survey data from the iPoll and Gallup Organization were used to construct the Climate Change Skeptic Index (CCSI) that served as a proxy to capture public opinion trends in skepticism across the U.S. A two-part vector autoregressive model suggests that while economic recessions might be causally linked to climate skepticism, partisanship plays a more influential role in explaining it over time. The key result is that holding all included variables constant, anti-climate change statements by Republican Congresspersons made three quarters ago raise the CCSI by 0.17 percentage points on average in the current quarter.
Sambatur, Abhishek S.
"Recessions Or Partisanship: What Explains Climate Skepticism in the U.S.?,"
Undergraduate Economic Review: Vol. 16:
1, Article 9.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.iwu.edu/uer/vol16/iss1/9