A new poll has found that almost two-thirds of Americans believe that there is alien life beyond earth.
Pew Research’s latest survey asked respondents to say if their best guess was that intelligent life exists on other planets, with 65 per cent saying that it does, 34 per cent saying it does not, and two per cent declining to answer.
The poll was conducted just ahead of the release of the US intelligence report into the phenomenon of unidentified flying objects.
Just over half (51 per cent) of respondents say that the UFOs seen in footage that triggered the publication of the report are likely evidence of alien life.
This broke down into 40 per cent of those who answered saying that the videos were “probably” evidence, versus 11 per cent who said that it was “definitely” evidence.
Conversely, 36 per cent said the footage was probably not evidence of extraterrestrial life, and 11 per cent said it definitely was not.
Belief in aliens was once seen as a fringe conspiracy theory, but the official investigation into unexplained aerial phenomena by the US government is indicative of changing views on the subject.
Despite popular Hollywood portrayals, perhaps surprisingly, as many as 87 per cent of Americans do not see UFOs as a major threat to national security. Only 10 per cent see them as a major threat. Just over a quarter believe that aliens are friendly.
Men are more inclined to believe in extraterrestrial life — 70 per cent versus 60 per cent of women.
More than three-quarters of people under the age of 30 are believers versus 57 per cent of those over 50 years old.
It did say that there have been 143 UFO sightings since 2004 that cannot be explained, and of that total, there were 21 reports of unknown phenomena related to 18 reported events, that were beyond the known technological capabilities of America.
The report, which has been sent to Congress and made available to the general public, has intensified speculation about the existence of life beyond our solar system.