Young Americans increasingly believe that they have "no future or that humanity is doomed" because of climate change, CBS News reported on Thursday, a development that comes as President Joe Biden resorts to apocalyptic warnings to push his administration's environmental agenda.
"We see that a lot of young people are saying, I think my life will be worse than my parents' lives," said Dr. Sarah Schwartz, a psychology professor at Suffolk University, pointing to a generational phenomenon of "climate anxiety."
Forty-six percent of Americans between the ages of 16 and 25 are "extremely" or "very" worried about the climate, while 26 percent said climate change has affected their ability to function day to day, according to one study. Fifty-four percent of respondents, meanwhile, said they are "afraid" of the future.
The report comes as President Joe Biden and other Democrats employ increasingly dire warnings about the fate of the planet to justify wide-ranging environmental policies. Biden in a speech in Massachusetts last year described climate change as a "code red for humanity."
"Climate change is literally an existential threat to our nation and to the world," the president said.
Since Biden took office, Republicans have criticized the administration's costly environmental initiatives, including limits on domestic energy production that spiked gas prices, subsidies for electric vehicles, and a war on gas stoves. The Biden administration's Financial Year 2023 budget includes $44.9 billion to "tackle the climate crisis."
Schwartz stopped short of calling "climate anxiety" a disorder, but she emphasized the growing trend as evidence that the country should "address the societal issues and the environmental issues."