The Guardian. A new poll by Ipsos Mori has found that the proportion of adults in the UK who believe that climate change is “definitely” a reality dropped by more than 30% over the last year, from 44% to 31%.
Overall around nine out of 10 people questioned still appear to accept some degree of global warming. But the steep drop in those without doubts will raise fears that it will be harder to persuade the public to support actions to curb the problem, particularly higher prices for energy and other goods. The true level of doubt is also probably underestimated because the poll only questioned 16 to 64-year-olds. People over 65 are more likely to be sceptical, the researchers said.
Another finding by the poll that hints at a growing lack of public confidence is a significant drop in those who said climate change was caused by human activities. One year ago this number was one in three, but this year just one in five people believes global warming to be man-made, according to Edward Langley, Ipsos Mori’s head of environment research.
Although some research among UK consumers has shown cynicism resulting from questions in popular culture and the mass media over the credibility of climate science and data, a recent poll for the BBC suggested that these events have had less influence on British public opinion than the cold winter. The BBC poll found that 25% of people thought climate change was not happening, compared with 15% in November last year.
Findings of the poll included:
- 31% said climate change was definitely happening
- 29% said “it’s looking like it could be a reality”
- 31% said the problem was exaggerated—a category which rose by 50% compared to a year ago
- 6% said climate change was not happening at all
- 3% said they did not know