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25 February 2013 – Environmental concerns among citizens around the world have been falling since 2009 and have now reached twenty-year lows, according to a multi-country GlobeScan poll.
The findings are drawn from the GlobeScan Radar annual tracking poll of citizens across 22 countries. A total of 22,812 people were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone during the second half of 2012. Twelve of these countries have been regularly polled on environmental issues since 1992.
Asked how serious they consider each of six environmental problems to be—air pollution, water pollution, species loss, automobile emissions, fresh water shortages, and climate change—fewer people now consider them “very serious” than at any time since tracking began twenty years ago.
Climate change is the only exception, where concern was lower from 1998 to 2003 than it is now. Concern about air and water pollution, as well as biodiversity, is significantly below where it was even in the 1990s. Many of the sharpest falls have taken place in the past two years.
The perceived seriousness of climate change has fallen particularly sharply since the unsuccessful UN Climate Summit in Copenhagen in December 2009. Climate concern dropped first in industrialized countries, but this year’s figures show that concern has now fallen in major developing economies such as Brazil and China as well.
* The chart shows average findings across the 12 countries for which tracking data is available since 1992. 6,774 citizens across these 12 countries were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone on this question between July 3, 2012 and September 3, 2012. Polling was conducted by the international research consultancy GlobeScan and its partners in each country. In 4 of the 12 countries, the sample was limited to major urban areas. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 4.3 to 4.8 percent, 19 times out of 20.
** Question wording and 1992 fieldwork done by The Gallup Institute, Princeton.
Despite the steep fall in environmental concern over the past three years, majorities still consider most of these environmental problems to be “very serious,” Water pollution is viewed as the most serious environmental problem among those tested, rated by 58 percent as very serious. Climate change is rated second least serious out of the six, with one in two (49%) viewing it as “very serious.”
GlobeScan Chairman Doug Miller comments: “Scientists report that evidence of environmental damage is stronger than ever—but our data shows that economic crisis and a lack of political leadership mean that the public are starting to tune out.
Those who care about mobilizing public opinion on the environment need to find new messages in order to reinvigorate a stalled debate.”
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- Robin Miller, Manager, Marketing and Communications, +1 416-969-3076, firstname.lastname@example.org
In total 22,812 citizens in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Poland, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and the USA were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between July 3, 2012 and September 3, 2012. The data used in this release is from a sub-sample of 6,774 citizens in the 12 countries for which tracking data is available since 1992 around environmental concerns.
In Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kenya, Panama, and Turkey urban samples were used. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 4.3 to 4.8 per cent, 19 times out of 20.
Sample Size (unweighted)
Type of sample
|Australia||1009||July 27 – August 11, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
|Brazil||828||July 26 – August 23, 2012||18-69||Face-toface||Urban1|
|Canada||1007||July 20 – August 8, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
|China||1000||July 30 – August 15, 2012||18+||Telephone||Urban2|
|France||825||July 5 – 12, 2012||15+||Telephone||National|
|Germany||1002||July 13 – August 6, 2012||16-70||Telephone||National|
|India||1010||August 7 – 16, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||National|
|Indonesia||1000||July 3 – 18, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||Urban3
|Japan||1000||August 1 – 5, 2012||20-69||Online||National|
|Kenya||1000||August 19 – 25, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||Urban4
|Malaysia||1212||July 3 – 31, 2012||21+||Face-to-face||National|
|Mexico||1000||August 9 – 13, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||National|
|Nigeria||1000||August 13 – 19, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||National|
|Pakistan||2375||July 22–28, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||National|
|Panama||1005||July 28 – August 10, 2012||18+||Telephone||Urban5|
|Peru||1007||August 10–18, 2012||18-70||Face-to-face||National|
|Poland||1011||August 14–22, 2012||18+||Face-to-face||National|
|South Korea||703||August 13–17, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
|Spain||800||July 12–20, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
|Turkey||1002||July 12 – September 3, 2012||15+||Face-to-face||Urban6
|United Kingdom||1001||July 3 – August 18, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
|USA||1015||July 20 – August 9, 2012||18+||Telephone||National|
- In Brazil the survey was conducted in Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Curitiba, Goiânia, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, and São Paulo, representing 18 per cent of the national population.
- In China the survey was conducted in Beijing, Beiliu, Chengdu, Dujiangyan, Fenyang, Fuyang, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Manzhouli, Quanzhou, Qujing, Shanghai, Shenyang, Shuangcheng, Wuhan, Xi’an, Xining, and Zhengzhou, representing 45 per cent of the national adult population.
- In Indonesia the survey was conducted in Bandung, Jakarta, Makassar, Medan, and Surabaya, representing 27 per cent of the national adult population.
- In Kenya the survey was conducted in Nairobi, Nyanza, Riff Valley, and the Central, Coast, Eastern and Western Regions, representing 37 per cent of the national adult population.
- In Panama the survey was conducted in Panamá, Chiriquí, Colón, Coclé, Veraguas, Herrera, Bocas del Toro and Los Santos, representing 70 per cent of the adult population.
- In Turkey the survey was conducted in Adana, Ankara, Antalya, Bursa, Diyarbakir, Erzurum, Istanbul, Izmir, Konya, Samsun, and Zonguldak, representing 56 per cent of the national adult population.
+1 416 969 3073
|Brazil||Market Analysis||Florianópolis||Fabián Echegaray
+55 48 3364 0000
+1 416 969 3073
+1 416 969 3073
|France||Efficience 3||Paris and Rheims||Christian de Thieulloy
+33 1 4316 5442
|Germany||Ri*QUESTA GmbH||Teningen||Bernhard Rieder
+49 7641 93 43 36
|India||Team C Voter||Noida||Yashwant Deshmukh
+91 120 424 7135
|Indonesia||DEKA Marketing Research||Jakarta||Irma Malibari
+62 21 723 6901
+1 416 969 3073
|Kenya||Research Path Associates Ltd.||Nairobi||Jeremy Mwololo
+254 20 2734770
|Malaysia||International Islamic University Malaysia||Kuala Lumpur||Prof. Dato’ Sri Dr. Syed Arabi Idid
+60 3 6196 4870 (ext 5097)
|Mexico||Parametría||Mexico City||Francisco Abundis
+52 55 2614 0089
|Nigeria||Market Trends International||Lagos||Jo Ebhomenye
+234 1 791 7987
|Pakistan||Gallup Pakistan||Islamabad||Ijaz Shafi Gilani
+92 51 2655630
|Panama||Dichter & Neira||Panama City||Gabriel Neira
+507 236 4000
+511 215 0600
+48 22 693 46 93
|South Korea||Hyundai Research Institute||Seoul||Seongkeun Choi
+82 2 2072 6223
|Spain||Sigma Dos Int.||Madrid||Gines Garrido
+34 91 360 0474
|Turkey||Yöntem Research Consultancy Ltd.||Istanbul||Bülent Gündoğmuş
+90 212 278 1219
|United Kingdom||Populus Data Solutions||London||Patrick Diamond
+44 207 553 4148
+1 416 969 3073
How serious a problem do you consider each of the following issues to be? Is each of the following a very serious problem, somewhat serious problem, not very serious problem or not a serious problem at all?
ROTATE ORDER. CODE ONE.
05 – Loss of biodiversity
06 – Climate change
07 – Automobile emissions
97 – Other