|Embargoed Media Release:
5 a.m. GMT Friday 19 November 2004
|Media contacts||About GlobeScan||Questionnaire||Methodology||Research Partners|
Bangkok, Thailand At the IUCN World Conservation Congress here today, global opinion researchers from GlobeScan Incorporated, in association with the Com+ Alliance of Communicators for Sustainable Development, released provocative findings from the first-ever global public opinion poll on humanitys relationship with nature.
Results of the poll show that majorities across the 20 countries surveyed by GlobeScan believe that failure to address species loss within 20 years will imperil Earths ability to sustain life. Moreover, citizens report having a deep, practical, and even spiritual relationship with nature. But belief that individuals have the capacity to help reverse species loss varies extensively from country to country, primarily by levels of economic development.
As world conservation leaders gather this week in Bangkok at the IUCN World Conservation Congress, the poll sends the message that citizens the world over care deeply about nature and feel strongly that society must address the growing rate at which species are becoming threatened.
The poll, forming part of GlobeScans 8th annual International Environmental Monitor survey, was conducted between June and August 2004 with a representative sample of 20,753 adult citizens across 20 countries.
Because of the difficulties of conducting opinion research in developing countries, a metropolitan sample was used in six of the 20 countries. The margin of error on each national survey ranges from 2.3 percent to 5.0 percent. Full results are available from GlobeScan by commercial subscription.
Commenting on the survey results, Doug Miller, President of GlobeScan said We knew from our prior research that nature issues had come to dominate the publics environmental agenda in the industrialized world, while pollution remained the dominant concern in developing countries. But the current findings reveal a powerful element of self-interest on the part of citizens of both North and South. People all over the world are saying loudly that they care deeply about what society does to address species loss, because they believe the future of our species is at risk.
Further survey results are reported below.
The opinion that failing to address species loss will soon imperil Earths survival is progressively more pervasive among younger age groups, suggesting growing realization that biodiversity and human well-being are inherently linked.
Urban Brazilians (68%) are most likely to anticipate a threat to the planet's survival, while Americans (40%), Russians (37%), and Czechs (32%) are among the least to do so. Opinion in China (56%) and Canada (56%) among the world's fastest growing and most resource-intensive economies respectively reflects the global average. Only in the Czech Republic (43%) and Netherlands (28%) is the prevailing opinion that there will be significantly fewer species but with little impact on the planet overall. In the United States (33%), a larger than average percentage have similar expectations, but a plurality of 40 percent still anticipate that species loss will affect Earths ability to sustain life.
People in the Global South home of much of the worlds biodiversity are 10 points more likely than those in Northern countries to respond that inaction on species could imperil the planets life support system. This view is especially widespread in Latin America.
Nature is a quality-of-life issue for people around the world. Strong majorities in all countries surveyed, ranging from 62 percent in Turkey to 94 percent in Canada, agree that experiencing nature and wildlife is one of the best experiences [they] can have.
People in Germany (91%), Great Britain (90%), South Africa (91%) and China (92%) are among the most likely to agree that nature has an important experiential value for them. Those in Nigeria (67%), India (76%), Russia (70%), and Italy (70%) are among the least likely.
Beyond natures experiential value, similarly strong majorities say that nature has a special spiritual quality for them personally. Humanitys connection to nature is multidimensional. This personal stake that citizens have in nature suggests there is latent potential for social mobilization around nature issues especially if those personal interests come to be perceived as threatened.
The world is divided on the extent to which individuals have the capacity to contribute meaningfully to curbing species loss, with 44 percent disagreeing that the current threat to species and their habitat is such a big problem that there is very little the individual can do about it.
While 59 percent of people in wealthy countries disagree that individuals can do little about species loss, only 32 percent of those in developing countries feel similarly empowered.
Citizens of the G7 countries, especially the United States (77%) and Canada (74%), are most inclined to deny that there is little the individual can do to counter species loss. People in Indonesia (11%), Russia (15%) and China (23%) feel least empowered. Latin Americans, who are most likely to anticipate a catastrophic outcome if no action is taken on species loss, tend be divided on this issue.
Given the practical and spiritual importance of nature felt globally, societal leaders would do well to foster social initiatives designed to unlock the potential for behavioral change especially in jurisdictions where citizens believe that they have personal efficacy, Doug Miller of GlobeScan added.
(Click on name to e-mail.)
|Mr. Doug Miller, President
Bangkok: +66 2 344 8888 Rm.452
|Mr. Eric Whan, Director
Environmental Issues Research
GlobeScan Incorporated is a global public opinion and stakeholder research firm with offices in Toronto, London, and Washington. GlobeScan conducts custom research and annual tracking studies on global issues. With a research network spanning 50+ countries, GlobeScan works with global companies, multilateral agencies, national governments and non-government organizations to deliver research-based insights for successful strategies.
Mailing address: 65 St. Clair Avenue East, Suite 900, Toronto Canada M4T 2Y3
|1. For each of the following statements, please tell me if you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, or strongly disagree.|
|a) Nature has a special spiritual quality for me personally.|
|01- Strongly agree
02- Somewhat agree
03- Somewhat disagree
04- Strongly disagree
|b) Experiencing nature and wildlife is one of the best experiences I can have.|
|c) The current threat to species and their habitat is such a big problem that there is very little the individual can do about it.
|2. Thinking ahead 20 years, if no action is taken to reduce species loss, which one of the following do you think will most likely result?|
|01- Only a small percentage of species will be lost
02- There will be significantly fewer species, but with no serious effect on the planet overall
03- Species loss will seriously affect the planets ability to sustain life
97- Other (please specify)
|Field dates||Sample frame||Survey
|Argentina||1002||May 20-24, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Nation-wide|
|Brazil||500||August 12-23, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Urban1|
|Canada||1598||May 27 - July 5, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|China||1800||July 2-18, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Urban2|
|Czech Republic||1006||June 10-25, 2004||15 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|France||1001||May 17-27, 2004||15 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|Germany||1002||June 15 - July 2, 2004||15 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|Great Britain||1001||May 17 - June 6, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|India||1016||July 7 - 19, 2004||15 years or older||Face-to-face||Urban3|
|Indonesia||1000||June 28 - July 12, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Urban4|
|Italy||1007||July 8-21, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|Mexico||1000||July 1-15, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Nation-wide|
|Netherlands||1060||July 15-27, 2004||18 years or older||Internet||Nation-wide|
|Nigeria||1000||July 19-27, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Nation-wide|
|Philippines||500||August 16-24, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Urban5|
|Russia||1035||June 12-22, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Nation-wide|
|South Africa||1500||July 23-28, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
|Spain||52||July 26 - August 4, 2004||18 years or older||Face-to-face||Nation-wide|
|Turkey||1200||August 6 - Sept. 1, 2004||15 years or older||Face-to-face||Urban6|
|USA||1003||May 19 - June 8, 2004||18 years or older||Telephone||Nation-wide|
1In Brazil, the survey was conducted in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, representing 35% of the total urban population.
2In China the survey was conducted in Beijing, Shenyang, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Wuhan, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Zhengzhou, and Xian, representing 36% of the total population in Urban China.
3In India the survey was conducted in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, and Chennai, representing 20% of the total urban population.
4In Indonesia, the survey was conducted in Jakarta and Surabaya, representing 13% of the total urban population.
5In Philippines, the survey was conducted in 14 cities and 3 municipalities, representing 27% of the total urban population.
6In Turkey the survey was conducted in Adana, Ankara, Antalya, Bursa, Diyarbakir, Erzurum, Istanbul, Izmir, Konya, Samsun, and Zonguldak, representing 46% of the total population.
|Argentina||TNS Gallup Argentina||Buenos Aires|
|Brazil||Poliedro Pesquisa de Mercado||Sao Paulo|
|Canada||GlobeScan / Research House||Toronto|
|China||Survey & Statistics Institute of BBI||Beijing|
|Czech Republic||RCA Research, Spol. s.r.o||Prague|
|Great Britain||GlobeScan / ICM Direct||London|
|India||AC Nielsen ORG-MARG Research Limited||Mumbai|
|Indonesia||Deka Marketing Research||Jakarta|
|Mexico||Mund Americas||Mexico City|
|Nigeria||Market Trends Research International, Nigeria Ltd.||Lagos|
|Philippines||Sigma Dos Philippines||Manila|
|Russia||CESSI Institute for Comparative Social Research||Moscow|
|South Africa||Markinor (Pty) Ltd||Randburg|
|Spain||Quota Research, S.A.||Madrid|
|Turkey||Yontem Research & Consultancy Limited||Istanbul|
|USA||GlobeScan / Research House||Toronto|