For Release:
Bali, Indonesia, 18:00, Monday, 10 December 2007

New Global Survey Lets On-the-Ground Climate Decision Makers Be Heard

 powerpoint slides  globescan website

A fascinating picture has emerged from a unique survey of 1,000 climate decision makers and influencers from across 105 countries conducted by GlobeScan in the two weeks leading up to the Bali Climate Conference (22 November – 5 December 2007). Unlike public opinion polls, this survey focuses on the views of professionals in position to make or influence large decisions in their organizations and society. This focus, together with the survey’s large global sample and good balance of respondents across all geographies and sectors, makes this survey unique.

Three of the survey’s more provocative findings:
  1. Decision makers rate bio-fuels produced from food crops like corn as having the LEAST potential of 18 technologies for reducing carbon emissions over the next 25 years.
  2. Decision makers put surprisingly high emphasis on the protection of biodiversity and having sustainable development guide climate actions, while putting relatively low emphasis on cost effectiveness.
  3. Decision makers expect fully half of their organization’s reductions of carbon emissions over the next decade to come from energy demand management or efficiency improvements.

Some of the other top-line findings of this survey of senior officials from governments at all levels, scientists, and business and civil society leaders, include:
  • Over six in ten (63%) report that climate is one of the top three factors affecting their organizations today.
  • On average, two thirds (66%) of the resources their organizations currently allocate to climate is directed at mitigation (i.e., reducing emissions) and one third (34%) to adapting to the affects of climate change. In five years they expect adaptation to increase somewhat, changing this ratio to 60-40.
  • In reducing their organization’s carbon emissions over the next 10 years, respondents expect half the reductions (48%) to come from energy demand management and efficiency improvements, a third (35%) to come from lower-carbon energy sources, and 18 percent from carbon capture.
  • Respondents look to their national government (92%) ahead of global institutions (76%) or more local-level governments (71%) for the public policies and leadership that their organizations need in order to implement climate solutions.
  • When rating the potential role of 18 specific technologies “in reducing atmospheric carbon over the next 25 years without unacceptable side effects,” majorities give high marks only to solar, wind and co-generation (combined heat and electricity). The lowest rating is given to first generation bio-fuels
    from food crops.
  • Asked to rate various possible components of an adequate post-2012 global agreement, strong majorities give high ratings to inclusion of all major carbon-emitting countries (92% essential or important), commitment by wealthy countries to provide aid/technology transfer to assist developing countries meet targets (84%), legally binding targets for each signatory country (77%), and different types of commitments based on countries’ stage of development (76%).
  • Respondents also make clear that climate actions must be taken within the framework of sustainable development (87% important), ensuring the protection of biodiversity (78%), appropriate burden sharing (75%), energy security (75%), and setting an agreed maximum CO2 concentration in the atmosphere (74%).
  • Respondents are neither pessimistic nor optimistic that a post-2012 global agreement will be concluded by the UN target of December 2009 needed to ensure a smooth transition.

This survey is the first of a continuing series of twice-yearly surveys of climate decision makers and influencers across the world. (This first survey will continue to be fielded after Bali to fill out the number of qualified respondents.) Conducted in the six official UN languages over the Internet by GlobeScan Incorporated, this initiative has the support of the World Bank, the World Conservation Union (IUCN), and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), along with a wide range of other organizations (please see logos on first slide attached).

For detailed results and methodological information, please see the attached slides.

For more information, please contact:

Doug Miller, GlobeScan President
Ayodya Resort, Bali: (tel) +62 361 771102, Rm 1528 (until noon, Wed., 12 December)
Mobile: +44 78 999 77 000 or locally on: 0818 0768 5906 (until 12 December)