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E-M:/ poll results on michiganders' attitudes toward the environment

Enviro-Mich message from Dave Dempsey <davemec@voyager.net>

Monday's Detroit Free Press reported on the results of a poll of 600
Michigan citizens regarding environmental attitudes.  Encouragingly, the
EPIC-MRA survey, conducted in August, showed strong support for policies
promoting a clean environment.  Some of the questions and answers not
covered in the story also showed that Michigan policymakers are out of
touch with what their constituents want on clean air policy.

Key questions (paraphrased, edited) and answers:

Are federal laws providing for clean water standards too stringent, about
right, or too lenient?

3% too stringent
59% too lenient
28% about right

Are federal standards providing for clean air too stringent, about right,
or too lenient?

6% too stringent
53% too lenient
33% about right

Which of the following statements best describes the kind of environmental
protection laws and standards that you support?

9%  Environmental laws that will clean up air and water as much as possible
using whatever technology science can offer, without regard for the
consequences it may cause for our economy

56%  Environmental laws that will continue to make progress in cleaning up
our air and water, but not by causing unnecessary damage to our economy or
costing jobs

32% Environmental laws that will clean up our air and water wherever
possible, as long as those efforts do not result in a loss of jobs or
damage to the economy

Thinking about air pollution, which of the following statements comes
closer to your view?

11% All of the air pollution measured in Michigan comes from sources of air
pollution generated here in Michigan

30% Most of the air pollution comes from Michigan, but much of it blows
toward Michigan from other states, such as manufacturing plants in Chicago
or Gary, Indiana

42% Air pollution measured in Michigan is probably evenly split between air
pollution that comes from Michigan and what comes from other states

10% Most of the air pollution comes from other states, such as
manufacturing plants in Chicago or Gary, Indiana, with only some of it
coming from Michigan sources

President Clinton signed new air quality standards proposed by EPA that
will require states and counties to significantly reduce air pollution in
the next few years.  Based on what you know or have heard about these new
standards, do you favor them or oppose them?

29% strongly favor
31% somewhat favor
8% somewhat opose
11% strongly oppose

The EPA, President Clinton, and supporters of the new clean air standards
say that the new standards will reduce air pollution enough to save 15,000
lives per year nationally, as well as prevent 250,000 asthma attacks.  The
EPA estimates the cost of complying with the new standards will be only
about $6 billion per year, and that the health benefits far outweigh the
cost in any lost jobs or increased costs to consumers for automobile or
utility cost.  Knowing this, do you favor or oppose the new standards?

36% strongly favor
33% somewhat favor
7% somehwat oppose
12% strongly oppose

Dave Dempsey
Policy Director
Michigan Environmental Council
119 Pere Marquette, Suite 2A
Lansing, MI 48912

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