55% of Europeans fear that the energy transition will further fragment society

An exclusive survey by Ipsos and BNP Paribas has taken the pulse of Europeans with regard to the transition and the resulting inequalities. Between urgency and fear, it is more than ever time to take the right path.

The climate emergency is no longer a debate

At a time when purchasing power is the primary concern in daily life, European citizens are nevertheless fully aware of the climate emergency. It is the second most important concern for them. More than two-thirds declare themselves anxious about climate change.

Habits that are starting to change...

Europeans have begun to adopt new habits, whether in the areas of housing, mobility or consumption: 79% reduce the heating in their homes, 64% limit their car journeys, 52% say they have reduced or stopped eating meat.

These changes are not only motivated by their environmental impact: the economic dimension also plays an important role in today’s context of soaring energy prices.

...despite some reluctance

Conversely, among citizens who have not changed their daily habits, we can observe a reluctance to change their lifestyles. This is for example the case of meat consumption: 63% of those who have not changed anything simply do not want to do so.

A third (37%) of Europeans are also very sceptical about the benefits of the energy transition, believing that it will have more negative than positive effects on their quality of life and well-being. Fear of being too constrained?

The risk of an unfair transition

Europeans are very divided when it comes to assessing the level of effort required of them in the context of the energy transition. One third believe that too much is being asked of them, one third not enough and one third are satisfied.

This dichotomy is also apparent between the categories perceived as more "polluting" and doing little on the one hand (large companies and wealthy individuals) and those considered more "sober" and more penalized (particularly modest individuals and SMEs). The risk of social inequalities generated by the transition is perceived as high, especially for those who are obliged to travel by car and the others: 70% see a risk of inequality.

Binding solutions are less well accepted

To involve citizens in the energy transition, they prefer financial incentives (76% consider them effective). More restrictive measures, such as taxes, are less accepted and considered ineffective by 28% of citizens, suggesting hostile reactions if they are implemented.

One figure finally sums up the urgency of leaving no one behind: more than half (55%) of Europeans fear that the energy transition will further fragment society. It is therefore imperative to consider the vulnerability and the higher impact suffered by certain populations.

 BNP Paribas


About BNP Paribas

BNP Paribas is the European Union’s leading bank and key player in international banking. It operates in 65 countries and has nearly 185,000 employees, including more than 145,000 in Europe. The Group has key positions in its three main fields of activity: Commercial, Personal Banking & Services for the Group’s commercial & personal banking and several specialised businesses including BNP Paribas Personal Finance and Arval; Investment & Protection Services for savings, investment and protection solutions; and Corporate & Institutional Banking, focused on corporate and institutional clients.

Based on its strong diversified and integrated model, the Group helps all its clients (individuals, community associations, entrepreneurs, SMEs, corporates and institutional clients) to realise their projects through solutions spanning financing, investment, savings and protection insurance. In Europe, BNP Paribas has four domestic markets: Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg.

The Group is rolling out its integrated commercial & personal banking model across several Mediterranean countries, Turkey, and Eastern Europe. As a key player in international banking, the Group has leading platforms and business lines in Europe, a strong presence in the Americas as well as a solid and fast-growing business in Asia-Pacific.

BNP Paribas has implemented a Corporate Social Responsibility approach in all its activities, enabling it to contribute to the construction of a sustainable future, while ensuring the Group's performance and stability.

About this study

These are the findings of a 10-country study survey conducted by Ipsos for BNP Paribas. Ipsos interviewed an international sample of 9445 adults aged 18 and older in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom.


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