According to a global poll of 125,000 individuals, citizens in nations that produce fossil fuels are less likely to perceive climate change as a threat.
According to new study from the UK-based charity Lloyd’s Register Foundation, people are less likely to perceive climate change as a concern in nations that are heavily dependent on the extraction of fossil fuels for their energy requirements or exports. The research is based on data from the most recent World Risk Poll, which surveyed 125,000 people in 121 countries with the help of management consulting firm Gallup.
If climate change poses a threat to people in your country within the next 20 years, please respond. When respondents who saw climate change as a “somewhat serious threat” are included, the percentage who indicated it is a “very serious threat” globally rises to 67%. However, less than 50% of the populace considers climate change to be a “very serious threat” in all nations whose energy exports account for more than 50% of total exports. Included in this are Norway, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, the latter of which will host the COP28 UN Climate Change Conference in November 2023.
In contrast, anxiety is substantially higher in many nations, particularly those in Europe and Latin America. In Chile, the nation with the highest level of concern, 87% of people consider climate change to be a “very serious threat.”
This difference is visible both inside and outside of national borders. For instance, 45% of people in Norway, a country that produces a lot of fossil fuels, consider climate change to be a “very serious threat.” However, those in western and northern Norway, which are home to the majority of the nation’s offshore oil and gas reserves, are significantly less concerned, with 40% and 31%, respectively, considering it as a “very serious threat”.
Tim Slingsby, head of skills and education at the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, said in a press release that “we are reminded of the disastrous impact climate change is having on our world every day.” “There is no disputing the impending danger to our world, whether it be the destruction brought on by flooding, wildfires, or protracted heatwaves. Therefore, the fact that so many people, especially those from nations and regions that depend on the extraction of fossil fuels, continue to disregard it as a danger to their safety should worry us all.
“Risk psychology is one reason why this might be. For instance, warnings about climate change may be minimised or discounted when compared to threats that seem more urgent or closer to home, such as the fear of lost economic prosperity or employment as a result of decarbonization, which can appear as an abstract threat to those who do not see the impact in their daily lives.