climate change canada

This map of Canada shows what each province thinks of climate change

A recent study by Yale University is really showing the divide between Canadians who believe that climate change is a real thing, and those who are in climate change denial.

The Canadian Climate Opinion Maps 2018, from Yale's Climate Change Communication program, presents visual representations of data sourced from across the country. The series of eight maps show the disparity of sentiments about climate change from coast to coast and political riding to political riding.

Unsurprisingly, most people in virtually all of Alberta and Saskatchewan — leaders of the movement to separate from the rest of Canada after the recent federal election — along with parts of Manitoba and B.C. do not think that the earth is getting warmer partly or mostly because of human activity.

In contrast, the western portion of B.C., most of Manitoba, and all of Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes are coloured various shades of orange on the same map, indicating higher percentages of adults in these places (at least more than half) who believe that yes, the earth is heating because of our habits.

But, 100 per cent of the country as surveyed at least agrees that the earth is heating up, regardless of the cause. Data was unavailable for residents of Labrador and the three territories.

Social media users are drawing obvious connections between this new information and the fact that the oil industry is massive enough in Alberta to be characterizing. The Prairies' dominantly Conservative political leanings are also relevant.

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it," one user aptly tweeted.

Interestingly, less than half of the population across the country, save for in Quebec and small parts of the Atlantic provinces, think climate change will harm them personally.

But, pretty much all Canadians — some pockets in Alberta serving as the sole exception, predictably — feel that their province has already felt negative effects from climate change, especially those around Montreal.

Portions of Alberta and Saskatchewan are the only parts of the country where less than 50 per cent of residents feel climate change is already harming Canada, or will within 10 years.

And, only one riding in the country, the Yellowhead riding west of Edmonton, had more than half of its residents agreeing with the statement "instead of trying to stop climate change we should focus on adapting."

If it weren't for the fact that it would inevitably mean even more harm for the planet if Alberta was allowed to control its own fate, some Canadians could argue that maybe them leaving Canada wouldn't be such a bad thing.

Lead photo by

Yale program on Climate Change Communication

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