- 1 in 3 Brits would be willing to pay more income tax to combat climate change
- Two thirds (63%) think UK government needs to do more to tackle climate change
- 56% think developed nations who have contributed most to the climate emergency, by producing the most carbon emissions, should pay more towards combating climate change
- Financial incentives would be the most effective way of changing behaviour/tackling climate change (43%)
New global research by Ipsos carried out ahead of Earth Day reveals that one in three Brits (32%) would be willing to pay more income tax to combat climate change.
The research also reveals that Brits believe financial incentives to encourage more environmentally friendly purchases would be the most effective way of instigating behaviour change to combat climate change (43% of Brits vs. 38% globally).
The survey of 21,231 adults across 29 countries reveals that just under a third (31%) of people globally agree that their government has a clear plan in place for how government, businesses and people are going to work together to tackle climate change.
In the UK this percentage declines further, as only 27% think the UK government has a clear plan to tackle climate change and this has dropped significantly since last year (27% 2023 vs. 39% 2022). Two thirds (63%) agree the country needs to do more to tackle climate change and only one in three (32%) see Britain as a world leader against climate change.
Two thirds (66%) say that if the UK government does not act now to combat climate change, then it is failing British citizens. Four in ten Brits believe that the economic cost of climate change itself will be larger than the cost of measures to reduce it.
Collective acknowledgement of the importance of individual action alongside government intervention is a prominent issue within the research, with seven in ten (70%) globally agreeing that everyone making small changes in their everyday lives would have a big impact on tackling climate change. In the UK, the figure is slightly higher at 72%.
There is also general optimism about the future with 57% disagreeing that climate change is beyond our control and it’s too late to do anything about it and only 20% saying they agree it is too late.
Dr. Pippa Bailey, Head of UK Climate Change & Sustainability Practice, Ipsos said:
The research reveals that there is still a strong belief that the public does not believe there is a clear strategy set out by the government to combat climate change. However, our research shows there is growing acknowledgement of the individual responsibility to take action to combat climate change, and the choices we can make to reduce our own carbon footprint.
Against the backdrop of current issues such as inflation, energy, food security and global conflict, our research indicates that providing financial incentives for individuals would set a precedent for instilling positive change to combat climate change. This is supported by the percentage of the population that already appear to be climate conscious and would be willing to direct a percentage of their income tax towards tackling climate change.
These are the results of a 29-country survey conducted by Ipsos on its Ipsos Global Advisor online platform, and in India, on its IndiaBus platform. Ipsos interviewed an international sample of 21,231 online adults aged 18 years and older in India, 18-74 in, Canada, Malaysia, South Africa, Turkey and the United States, 20-74 in Thailand, 21-74 in Indonesia and Singapore, and 16-74 in all other markets between 20th January and 3rd February in 28 countries and 17th February and 3rd March in Switzerland.
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