Thursday, May 03, 2007

Canadians Don't Believe Baird

Do you agree with this guy's assessment of global warming? If so, you like the Conservative government, are a minority.

Angus Reid has conducted a new poll asking Canadians who they believe when it comes to the economic impact of global warming - Conservative Environment Minister John Baird or former World Bank chief economist Nicholas Stern.

Baird has recently been touring Canada scaring voters with doom and gloom predictions for the Canadian economy should we meet our Kyoto commitments (I thought environmentalists were supposed to be the doom sayers). His recently unveiled climate change plan has also been heavily criticized by David Suzuki and Al Gore.

By comparison, Sir Nicholas Stern wrote what is widely held as the world's most authoritative assessment of the economic impact of climate change, and places the cost of NOT stopping global warming at $7 trillion or 20% of the world's economy. Oh yeah, Stern also happens to be a knight.

The Angus Reid poll sums up the opinions of Canadians in two questions:

As you may know, environment minister John Baird released a report which claims that committing to the Kyoto Protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions would drive Canada into a deep economic recession, lead to job losses, and increase gas prices. Do you agree or disagree with Baird’s assessment?

Agree

32%

Disagree

55%

Not sure

14%

Last year, a report written by former World Bank chief economist Nicholas Stern warned that global warming could end up shrinking the world’s economy by up to 20 per cent, which would make it a more costly crisis than either of the 20th century’s world wars. Do you agree or disagree with Stern’s assessment?

Agree

55%

Disagree

31%

Not sure

15%


The margin of error for the total sample is + or -3.1%, 19 times out of 20.

In layman's terms this means that the number of Canadians who believe John Baird is about exactly the same as the number that plan on voting Conservative. Funny, that.

The margin of error for my opinions is a hell of a lot better than John Bairds, + or - 3.1%.

10 comments:

E. R. Dunhill said...

Odiyya,
This warms the heart. I think I'll have a Molson and watch The Nature of Things in your collective honor, this evening.

Scott Tribe said...

As much as I'd love to trumpet this poll, I can't.

It's an online poll, according to the methodology.. and I simply do not trust their accuracy.

Anonymous said...

Agree 32% plus an accessible 14% unsure equals 46% support.

Sounds like more than enough for a majority, doesn't it? And that's merely assuming everyone considers environment the deciding factor in casting their ballot.

Odiyya said...

Anonymous - yours is exactly the sort of math I would expect from a Conservative. Thanks for backing up my main point.

Odiyya said...

I completely understand your point Scott, but when it comes to professional polling (as opposed to the take what you get polls on most sites) the technique and results are just as sound as phone polls.

I've commissioned and used online political polls in my professional work and can attest to their accuracy with concurrently run phone polls.

Oldschool said...

The polls that are really interesting are those that are taken before and after a real debate on the issue of Kyoto . . .

The after poll reveals the lack of real science that the Kyoto thing is built on. But of course we don't want no debating around here . . . ask Al the Goricle why he has ducked several in the last few months . . . could it be cause his scarey movie is just plain silly???

Odiyya said...

"we don't want no debating..."????

ps - "the Kyoto thing"????

Anonymous said...

Odiyya,

And your trumpeting this poll as is in some way meaningful or indicative of the vulnerability of the Tory government is exactly the sort of reasoning I'd expect of an obsessed environmentalist who fails to realize that 90% of Canadians don't treat environmental issues as their sole or primary ballot question.

I strongly encourage all the opposition parties to put all their eggs in the enviro-basket!

Odiyya said...

Anon - have some data to cite? Or does that assertion come from the same place as your "46% equals a majority" math?

E. R. Dunhill said...

Anon,
Someone who asks questions and presents a point of view that differs from the far right is not necessarily "an obsessed environmentalist". People might actually get somewhere in solving problems is we stop branding one antother environmentalist v industrialist, liberal v conservative. None of these conceptual boxes makes a great deal of sense, and very few people actually fit neatly into them.
Also, how does 46% constitute a majority? I typically need >50%.

-erd