Teenagers are the most convinced there's a climate emergency

Teenagers are the most convinced there’s a climate emergency — poll

Overall, the most popular actions to tackle the climate crisis were protecting and restoring forests, followed by renewable energy and climate-friendly farming.

"The survey - the biggest-ever survey of public opinion on climate change - has shown us that mobile gaming networks cannot only reach a lot of people, they can engage different kinds of people in a diverse group of countries", Prof.

When asked about the policies that required more focus, four climate measures emerged as the most popular globally: the conservation of forests and land (54% public support); solar, wind and renewable power (53%); climate-friendly farming techniques (52%); and investing more in green businesses and jobs (50%).

Public belief in the emergency was highest in Britain, which is due to host a global UN Summit on climate change in Scotland in November, and Italy with 81 per cent. Support for climate action everywhere was much higher among those who had gone to university, the survey showed.

When it comes to age, younger people (under 18) were more likely to say climate change is an emergency than older people. But the least favoured of the 18 policy suggestions presented in the poll was switching to a plant-based diet, which was backed by only 30% of those surveyed and failed to attract majority public support in any country. Australia and the USA also had large gaps while European countries did not.

The "Peoples' Climate Vote" was undertaken late a year ago in 50 high, middle and low income countries that together account for more than half of the world's population, according to the UNDP report.

"The voice of the people is clear - they want action on climate change", said Cassie Flynn, the UNDP's strategic adviser on climate change. So for example, they are representative not of what French people think, but of people in France. Stephen Fisher at the department of sociology at the University of Oxford said.

Four-fifths of UK people think climate change is a global emergency – Survey

Levels of concern were even higher among young people, with 86 per cent of people under the age of 18 in the United Kingdom saying they believed that climate change was a global emergency. The climate crisis continued unabated in 2020, with the joint highest global temperatures on record.

"We are at a fork in the road and the poll says "this is how your future generations are thinking, in specific policy choices" - it brings a way to envision the future".

Flynn heads the UNDP's Climate Promise programme that helps countries take more ambitious climate action. The poll is called the 'People's Climate Vote'. Australia was at 72% and the U.S. at 65%, the same as Russian Federation, and India was at 59%.

People backed renewable energy in eight of the ten survey countries with the highest emissions from electric heating being generated in the United States (65%), the biggest emitter surveyed, as well as Australia (76%), Canada (73%), Germany (71%), South Africa (69%), Japan (68%), Poland (57%), and Russian Federation (51%). "We've also found that most people clearly want a strong and wide-ranging policy response".

The relatively low support for the promotion of plant-based diets may be because there are few plant-based options in some countries or people may have felt that diet is more of a personal choice, said the UNDP. Why more women and girls are more concerned in the four English-speaking nations is unclear.

The results "clearly illustrate that urgent climate action has broad support amongst people around the globe" said Achim Steiner, Administrator of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

Commenting on the findings, Richard Black, senior associate at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU), said the global results were "startling in their universality, with people in every nation and every age group showing concern about the "climate emergency" and support for its solutions".

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