As climate impacts hit home, calls grow for greenhouse pollution cuts Media Release

Aug 03, 2007 - 5:34am

Increased water restrictions, droughts, heatwaves and intense bushfires have catalysed growing concern about climate change into a top tier political issue, with Australians hungry for political leadership and a plan to cut greenhouse pollution. These were the main findings of the first comprehensive review of Australians attitudes to climate change and its solutions which was released today by The Climate Institute.

“Climate change impacts are hitting home, intensifying expectations of our leaders for a plan to cut greenhouse pollution and switch to clean energy,” said John Connor, Chief Executive, The Climate Institute.

The report “Climate of the Nation: Australians Attitudes to Climate Change and Its Solutions” is based on quantitative polling and face to face research conducted exclusively for The Climate Institute and other publicly available research.

Polling of 1000 Australians conducted last weekend for the Climate Institute, and included in the report, shows that 80% Australians want a plan from the Government to cut greenhouse pollution with legal targets for 2020 and 2050.

It also shows:

  • 86% support for a quarter of Australia’s electricity generation to come from clean energy like wind and solar by 2020
  • 84% support for legislation for more efficient homes and cars
  • 83% agree Australia should lead the world in clean energy (solar, wind and geothermal) use.
The report shows Australians:
  • Have a growing understanding that climate change is already happening
  • Are particularly concerned about water resources and the impact of water restrictions
  • Believe that Australia should lead and is not yet doing so
  • Are worried about their children’s future (both jobs and environment).

“The community is consistent and clear about the solutions they expect to see from Government. Australians understand that there is no single energy solution and that we need decisive political leadership to cut greenhouse pollution, switch to a clean energy future and help stop the worst impacts of climate change.”

“Polling of almost 1000 Australians last weekend confirms that climate change is a potential vote changer and there is room for either major party to seize leadership on this issue.”

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