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Does public knowledge of climate change really matter in Australia?

Tranter, B ORCID: 0000-0002-0649-6065 2019 , 'Does public knowledge of climate change really matter in Australia?' , Environmental Communication , pp. 1-18 , doi: 10.1080/17524032.2019.1696853.

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Replicating questions on climate change and polar knowledge from the United States, this study examines the impact of climate related facts for predicting acceptance of anthropogenic climate change, and for predicting Green voting in Australia. Analysis of national survey data from the Australian Survey of Social Attitudes show that the likelihood of Green voting increases with climate knowledge. Climate-related knowledge is also positively associated with acceptance of anthropogenic climate change, but the effect of knowledge is moderated by party political identification. Greens, Labor Party identifiers and politically un-affiliated Australians align more closely with the scientific consensus on climate change as their climate knowledge increases. However, climate knowledge has no effect on the climate change attitudes of Liberal and National party identifiers. Climate knowledge also interacts with gender. Climate knowledge has a stronger association with anthropogenic climate change beliefs among women than it does among men. These findings suggest the information deficit model of science communication is likely to be efficacious among supporters of politically progressive parties in Australia, but less so among political conservatives.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Tranter, B
Keywords: climate change attitudes, Green voting, political party identification, Australia, climate knowledge, United States
Journal or Publication Title: Environmental Communication
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1752-4032
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/17524032.2019.1696853
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© 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

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