EIB climate survey 2/6

Assessing citizens’ opinions on the economic potential of climate action

Ahead of the global climate conference COP24, taking place in Poland on 3-14 December 2018, the European Investment Bank has launched a first-of-its-kind climate survey, in partnership with the global public opinion company YouGov, to find out how 25 000 citizens feel towards climate change in the European Union, the United States and China.

Discover below some visualisations of the key findings from the second of six releases.

You can download the results data set here.

The economic potential of climate action in the world – mixed feelings

The infographics below show the citizens’ level of optimism towards the economic potential of climate action – meaning the ability of climate-related investments to boost economic growth and create new jobs – in the world and in the European Union. Results show that US citizens are the most optimistic compared to citizens in the EU and China, with 26% of US citizens convinced that measures to combat climate change will have a positive impact on their country’s economic growth and on the job market, against 21% in the EU and only 11% in China.

Within the EU, the level of optimism varies greatly, with Malta and Cyprus being the most optimistic with respectively 30% and 29% of respondents believing in the economic potential of climate action and the Czech Republic and Slovakia being the least optimistic about its potential with only 8% and 11% respectively agreeing.

 
 

The consequences of climate change – types of concerns vary per region

The survey found that EU citizens show greater concern for the financial effects of climate change than Americans and the Chinese. 55% of Europeans believe climate change-related financial effects will affect them personally – while this is the case for only 40% of the Chinese respondents and 45% of Americans. However, as many as 73% of Chinese respondents expect negative health effects from climate change, against only 53% and 41% for Europeans and Americans respectively.

 

Find out more about beliefs on the economic potential of climate action in the following countries

A large majority of Germans think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 14% of Germans think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs, whereas the EU average sits at 21%. These numbers illustrate the low awareness in Germany, but also in Europe in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that citizens with lower incomes are more worried about the negative economic impact of climate actions than high-income ones: 39% of Germans earning less than €24,000 in yearly gross household income think measures to combat climate change negatively impact economic growth and the job market, whereas only 35% of Germans with more than €60,000 agree.

Find out more climate change perceptions in Germany in the infographics below.

Most French people think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 20% of French citizens think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs, just below the EU average at 21%. These numbers illustrate the low awareness in France, but also in Europe in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that citizens with higher incomes are more optimistic about the economic potential of climate action than lower-income ones: 30% of French people with more than €60,000 in yearly gross household income believe measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs, whereas only 17% with less than €24,000 agree.

Find out more about climate change perceptions in France in the infographics below.

Most Spaniards think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 23% of Spaniards think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs. Although slightly above the EU average, which sits at 21%, these numbers still illustrate the low awareness in Spain, and across the continent in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that citizens with lower incomes are more worried about the negative economic impacts of climate actions than high-income ones: 40% of Spaniards with less than €24,000 in yearly gross household income believe measures to combat climate change undermine the economy, whereas only 29% of Spanish people with more than €60,000 feel the same way.

Find out more about climate change perceptions in Spain in the infographics below.

Most Swedes think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 14% of Swedish citizens think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs, well below the EU average at 21%. These numbers illustrate the low awareness in Sweden, but also in Europe in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that citizens with lower incomes are more worried about the negative economic impact of climate actions than high-income ones: 42% of Swedes with less than €24,000 in yearly gross household income believe measures to combat climate change undermine economic growth, whereas only 36% of Swedes with more than €60,000 agree.

Find out more about climate change perceptions in Sweden in the infographics below.

Most Italians think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 26% of Italians think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs. Although above the EU average, which sits at 21%, these numbers still illustrate the low awareness in Italy, and across the continent in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that citizens with higher incomes are more optimistic about the economic potential of climate action than lower-income ones: 41% of Italians with more than €60,000 in yearly gross household income believe measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs, whereas only 22% with less than €24,000 agree.

Find out more about climate change perceptions in Italy in the infographics below.

Most Poles think that fighting climate change won’t help the economy

The survey reveals that only 22% of Poles think measures to combat climate change can help bring economic growth and create jobs. Although slightly above the EU average, which sits at 21%, these numbers still illustrate the low awareness in Poland, and across the continent in general, on the economic opportunities that fighting climate change can bring.

The survey results also highlight that, although citizens with lower incomes generally tend to be more worried about the negative economic impact of climate actions than high-income ones, in Poland it is the other way around. 59% of Poles with more than €60,000 in yearly gross household income believe measures to combat climate change undermine economic growth, whereas only 39% of Poles with less than €24,000 agree.

Find out more about climate change perceptions in Poland in the infographics below.

 

More climate-related data from a selection of open source researches

EIB climate survey 2018

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