Global Trends in Climate Antagonism
Concern about the climate emergency is under pressure
Climate change has become a visceral reality, with the past year seeing the largest number of climate-related disasters in recorded history. But there is rampant debate about who is responsible for climate change and how to address it: some consumers are changing how they make purchasing decisions according to their environmental impact, while others (particularly Gen Z) are putting the responsibility squarely on the shoulders of government, systems and corporations.
Eighty per cent agree that we are heading for environmental disaster unless we change our habits quickly. There is, however, a vast difference across regions between who is concerned about climate change and who is not. And the countries where people are talking about it least may be the countries that are doing the most about it.
One of the challenges we face in mobilizing action around climate change is that it is never people’s number-one priority. There is always something – COVID-19 over the past few years, and the cost-of-living crisis right now – that individuals find more pressing.
There is, though, a growing understanding of a collective need for environmental justice. For example, people can’t get flood insurance in vulnerable communities and the American Forests’ Tree Equity Score has uncovered a historical lack of infrastructure and green spaces in marginalized communities which impacts the long-term health outcomes of residents.
Globally, there is also debate about development – should developing countries be allowed to grow in the same ways that developed countries previously did?
Brands can help consumers meet their individual needs around climate change. Many people want something that lasts, with less packaging.
But consumers are not always able to make the trade-offs. We can’t expect consumers to shoulder the burden of sustainability, especially with rising inflation.
Above all, people want collaborative leadership from governments, corporations and NGOs on this issue.
Concern about the environmental emergency is ubiquitous across markets
Explore the trends
Our report tells a story from the topline data. For technical details, please see the full methodology. For a deeper dive into demographic differences, regional analysis and sector- or market-specific insights please contact us for a custom analysis of this incredibly rich data source.
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