The Language of a Cleaner, Safer, Healthier Environment – National Survey by Frank Luntz

During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were privileged to collaborate with Dr. Frank Luntz on a survey exploring our discourse on the circular economy and climate change within the United States. Our findings underscore Dr. Luntz’s key assertion: the power of words is profound.

Our study revealed that “climate change” has unexpectedly morphed into an obstacle in our shared mission to safeguard the environment. This term has evolved into a “trigger word,” instantly polarizing audiences and potentially impeding constructive dialogue. Yet, amidst this challenge, we find hope in the fact that years of concerted advocacy have borne fruit: a significant majority (61%) now acknowledge the serious environmental threats facing America’s future. It’s critical, therefore, to preserve this progress and refrain from using language that could inadvertently deepen divisions.

Interestingly, we discovered that most people now understand that the adoption of environmentally-friendly policies doesn’t necessarily mean an economic compromise. Moreover, we identified a universally resonating approach: advocating for the principles of “reuse, repurpose, and recycle.” This strategy not only addresses climate change but also garners widespread appeal across the political spectrum, potentially acting as a catalyst for political change.

Our survey findings indicated that 67% of respondents believe that climate change policies could be beneficial for the economy. A compelling 90% agreed that policies focused on “reuse, repurpose, and recycle” could positively impact the economy, with bipartisan endorsement.

In conclusion, by synergizing impactful words with compelling visuals, we can substantially influence environmental policies and initiatives, steering us towards a cleaner, safer, and healthier world.