Study: 4 in 10 Americans Believe That God Won't Allow Humans to Destroy the Earth, Regardless of Climate Change

November 30th 2014

ATTN: Staff

A report last week found that about 4-in-10 Americans believe that God would not allow humans to destroy the earth. 

While a majority of American disagree, this is still a startling number of people who do not fear climate change, even if they believe it's real. The survey, conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute, also found that almost half (49%) of Americans would agree that the "end times" foretold in religious texts about the apocalypse are the cause of recent natural disasters.

The good news, though, is that among climate change skeptics, only 2 percent are skeptics because "God is in control." While the answers for skepticism vary, the most common citation is probably the one you heard around the Thanksgiving dinner table: "It was really cold last year! I don't see any global warming!" Indeed, thirty-three percent of skeptics cited their personal experience with cold weather.

At least that response, while flawed, has some basis in personal experience. People who cite cold weather are far ahead of Sen. James Inhofe, who will be the most powerful Senator on environmental issues come next year when the Republicans assume control of the Senate. As we discussed recently, Inhofe says he can't believe in climate change "because God's still up there."

"[T]he arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what [God] is doing in the climate, to me, is outrageous," Inhofe said. 

Fortunately, only 2 percent of skeptics agree with him. Unfortunately, Inhofe is the one chairing the Senate's committee on the environment.

Let's look at some of Inhofe's greatest hits:

  • His basic thesis: "With all of the hysteria, all of the fear, all of the phony science, could it be that man-made global warming is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people? It sure sounds like it.''
  • So who came up with this hoax? And why? According to Inhofe, the United Nations, which wants to destroy the U.S. economy. Or as Inhofe put it, "shut down the machine called America." 
  • He's also identified the "media and Hollywood elites" as co-conspirators. What's their motivation? Money, according to Inhofe. "I mean, what would happen to the Weather Channel's ratings if all the sudden people weren't scared anymore?" (Editor's note: I consider myself a connoisseur of conspiracy theories. This is the first I've heard involving The Weather Channel.)

Need help shutting down climate change deniers? Here are some tips from Bill Nye