A post-election survey of 1,000 Latinos across the US conducted by the Sierra Club and GreenLatinos shows that there is nearly unanimous support within the Latino community to protect the earth. Of the respondents 97 percent agree that battling climate change is a moral obligation and 71 percent believe that the US must meet its commitments to the Paris Agreement.
The survey follows the election of Donald Trump, who has promised to bring back the flailing coal industry. “Trump threatens to renounce the country’s international commitments of the Paris Agreement and use the funds earmarked to fulfill those commitments to bring the dying coal industry back to life,” said Javier Sierra of the Sierra Club.
“This irrational attitude contradicts the international energy markets and the rest of the almost 200 countries, who in the recent Marrakesh Conference declared that their Paris Agreement commitments are ‘irreversible.’ Also irreversible is the attitude of Latino voters in their support for the climate fight and a clean energy economy,” asserted Sierra.
The survey found that U.S. Latino voters overwhelmingly support the fight against climate change with nearly 90 percent of those surveyed saying that environmental pollution affected their quality of life. Fully 40 percent of Latinos in the US live and work within close proximity to toxic sites such as coal-brining plants, agricultural fields or transportation infrastructure and 41 percent of those surveyed have family members that suffer from cancer.
Latinos also consider the conservation of forests, oceans, and fresh water resources important to their cultural, according to The Sierra Club. "Latinos are cultural conservationists. Our belief that we are the stewards of our earth is not based on a membership, it is passed down from generation to generation as part of our proud heritage," said GreenLatinos President & CEO Mark Magaña.
The Sierra Club survey results reaffirm a growing trend within the community during at least the last 8 years. Additionally, large percentages of Latinos support the expansion of solar development. Likewise, a poll commissioned by the William C. Velasquez Institute (WCVI) and supported by Californians Against Utilities Stopping Solar Energy (CAUSE) in 2013 revealed that 80 percent of the Latino community across Southern California want to make rooftop solar a high priority. They cited increasing energy rates, the proximity of fossil fuel generation plants to low-income residential areas and expanding opportunities for job growth in the solar industry as reasons for their stance.Tweet