SYDNEY, May 11 (Xinhua) — A new survey conducted by Griffith University has found that three in four Australians are concerned about climate change and would support policies that mitigate its potential impacts.
The results of the Climate Action Survey came from a survey of 3,915 Australian adults and were released along with a report on Wednesday.
A decade before the same survey was conducted, it found that only 34 percent of Australians were concerned about climate change. By 2021, this number had more than doubled to 72 percent.
The report’s lead author, associate professor Sameer Deshpande, said the project was one of the “most ambitious studies of climate change to date in Australia” and showed that key attitudes had undergone a dramatic shift.
“Nearly a quarter of respondents believed that climate change is an ‘extremely serious’ problem right now, and 45 percent believe it will be by 2050,” says Deshpande.
The survey found that only 2 percent of the population surveyed were climate deniers, 5 percent were skeptical and 16 percent were unconvinced about climate change.
Climate change concerns were highest among respondents under the age of 35, students, city dwellers, people who do not speak English as their primary language and people who volunteered as voters for Australia’s left-wing political parties.
Women also reported stronger beliefs than men when it came to climate change.
While Australia accounts for only 0.33 percent of the world’s population, it is responsible for 3.6 percent of global emissions, as it is a major global supplier of coal and other fossil fuels.
Despite this, the Australian government has only recently committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, as set out by the United Nations, and the government’s path to net-zero has been criticized as lacking substance and a clear plan to achieve the target.
But amid scorching heatwaves and wildfires, flooding on Australia’s east coast and environmental degradation, 57 percent of respondents believed they were already beginning to feel the effects of climate change.