This week a new poll was released that pretty much confirms the findings of other recent polling about Latinos and the environment. In essence, Latino voters are largely supportive of environmental issues and clean energy initiatives. This latest survey commissioned by the Sierra Club and the National Council of La Raza and conducted by Myers Research and Strategic Services, questioned over 1,100 Latino voters across the country.
- Air and water pollution are top concerns for Latino voters with 61% of Latino voters saying these are among the top two environmental issues for them and their families.
- More Latino voters indicate that they live or work near a toxic site (43% of Latino voters); this is an increase from what they indicated just four years ago when 34% reported living or working near such a site.
- Toxic waste is affecting the health of Latinos with almost half of the respondents of the survey indicating that they or someone in their immediate family suffers from asthma.
- 83% of those surveyed agree with the statement that “coal plants and oil refineries are a thing of the past” and that we need to move toward energy from clean sources.
- 87% of Latino voters surveyed would rather work in the clean energy sector than for a fossil fuel enterprise.
- 86% of those questioned would rather have the government invest in clean, renewable energy than invest in fossil fuels. Only 11% of those surveyed indicated support for government investment in fossil fuels.
- 77% of Latino voters believe that climate change is occurring, which is above the percentage that Americans at large believe that climate change is happening.
This survey shows that Latino voters may end up supporting candidates who are more oriented toward environmental issues and clean energy. These poll results provide candidates an opportunity to discuss environmental issues with Latino voters and to help inform policy positions that would likely garner support from this key constituency.
Latinos are more likely to suffer the ill effects of toxic environments, so it’s really not too surprising that they support clean, green energy instead of the continued use of fossil fuels.