Europeans’ attitudes towards climate change

Read about the latest Special Eurobarometer on Climate Change.
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climat change
Nicolas Becuwe
Nicolas
Bécuwe

Director, Public Division, Brussels

The latest Special Eurobarometer by Kantar for the European Commission finds that more than nine in ten (93%) European Union citizens think that climate change is a serious problem and almost eight in ten (79%) think climate change is a very serious problem, an increase of five points since 2017.

This research looked into the opinions of Europeans on a wide range of climate change issues - including the perceptions of the severity of the problem, the attitudes towards fighting climate change and opinions about who has the primary responsibility to address the problem. The study found that climate change is increasingly considered not only as a very serious problem but as the single most serious problem facing the world today.

It further found that:

  • 60% of respondents think climate change is one of the most serious problems facing the world. This is an increase of 17 points since 2017, and climate change has overtaken international terrorism (54%) as the second most serious problem after poverty, hunger and lack of drinking water (71%)
  • A majority of respondents in 19 countries think climate change is one of the most serious problems facing the world today. In all but one country, respondents are now more likely to think this way than they were in 2017
  • Personal action on climate change has increased in every country, with 60% of respondents saying they have personally taken action to fight climate change in the past six months (+11 vs 2017).

This research was carried out by Kantar in the 28 Member States of the European Union between 9 - 26 April 2019. 27,655 respondents from different social and demographic groups were interviewed face-to-face at home.

The study also reveals widespread support for national and EU actions to tackle climate change and transition to a climate-neutral economy, for example, 92% of respondents (+3 vs 2017) think that it is important that their national governments set ambitious targets to increase the amount of renewable energy used.

Read more about the study on the European Commission's website here.