In 34 of the 37 countries where data from the Pew 2007 Global Attitudes survey are available, the United States is named by a majority or a clear plurality as the country that is “hurting the world’s environment the most”–even a third of Americans rate their own country as the world’s biggest polluter, more than point to any other single country. (Respondents were asked to name a country from a list that included India, Germany, China, Brazil, Japan, United States and Russia.) In seven countries, majorities identify the U.S. as the world’s top polluter, including 61% in both Bangladesh and Turkey. In only three countries did respondents place more blame on a country other than the U.S. In South Korea, 56% place the most responsibility for environmental problems on China, while in India, 29% say their own country is hurting the world’s environment the most. In both cases, the United States is second on the list of countries most to blame. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.