Invisible Dust

London | Wednesday 16 January
Pollution level: Moderate

Climate change concern decreasing in the biggest polluting nations



Graph showing percentage of climate change concerns worldwide. Graph: Nielsen

Until recently, there has been a growing consensus that urgent global action is needed to avert the worst impacts of global warming.

Following a recent global survey, it appears the glass is two-thirds full. Sixty nine percent of citizens in 51 nations around the world are concerned about climate change, and that two-to-one majority is essentially unchanged over the last four years.

Unfortunately, there seems to be a decrease in concern in America and China. The Nielsen survey claims that less than half of Americans (48%) are concerned about global warming, compared to 51% in 2009 and 62% in 2007. With 14 point fall in 4 years, America needs to address the importance of climate change and the effect human activities have on the environment. In China, concern fell from 77% in 2009 to 64% in 2011, putting it back nearer to 2007’s figure of 60%.

The most concerned region of the world is Latin America (90%), followed by the combined Middle East-Africa region used by Nielsen, where concern has gone up 11% to 80% in two years.

The rise in concern could be a result of the distressing and impactful environmental events over the last several years that have affected Latin America directly.

“People are expressing clear concern about unusual weather patterns including increased rainfall, hurricanes, and floods in some parts of Latin America, and severe droughts in others.” Arturo García, president at Nielsen Latin America.

Where extreme weather has the worst impacts, concern is rising, it seems, which is hardly surprising.

At the opposite end, the least concerned include Norway, Australia and the UK, all places that are not yet feeling the bite of climate change.

The economic recession has already harmed western wealth and the spectre that haunts the green movement has returned, that green policies are luxuries only affordable in good times, despite the intolerable pressure humanity is now putting on the planet’s finite resources and the opportunity green growth presents.

Extracts from: The guardian/environment



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