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World’s Biggest Climate Poll: Unity and Action Demanded

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A groundbreaking new survey, the Peoples’ Climate Vote 2024, has revealed a powerful global consensus on the urgent need for climate action. Conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in collaboration with the University of Oxford and GeoPoll, this is the largest standalone public opinion survey on climate change ever undertaken. The findings demonstrate an overwhelming majority of global citizens supporting more ambitious efforts to combat the climate crisis, emphasizing the critical need for governments to transcend geopolitical differences and collaborate effectively.

Survey Highlights: Global Demand for Climate Action

The survey, encompassing responses from over 73,000 individuals across 77 countries, unveiled several key insights:

  1. Global Support for Stronger Climate Action: 80% of respondents worldwide want their governments to take stronger measures against climate change.
  2. Call for Geopolitical Unity: 86% advocate for countries to set aside geopolitical differences and work together to address climate challenges.
  3. Widespread Climate Concern: 56% of people globally think about climate change regularly, with this figure rising to 63% in Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

Detailed Findings: Insights from Major Emitters and Vulnerable Regions

The survey results highlight the breadth of support for climate action, even among the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitters:

  • United States and Russia: 66% of respondents support stronger climate measures.
  • China: 73% favor increased climate action.
  • Brazil and Iran: Showed some of the highest support, at 85% and 88% respectively.
  • Italy: Topped the chart with 93% of respondents calling for bolder climate action.

In major emitting countries like the United States, Canada, France, Germany, and Australia, women showed significantly higher support for climate action than men, with a gender gap ranging from 10 to 17 percentage points.

Transition Away from Fossil Fuels

A significant 72% of respondents globally support a swift transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources. This sentiment is strong even in top fossil fuel-producing nations:

  • Nigeria and Türkiye: 89% support.
  • China: 80% support.
  • Saudi Arabia: 75% support.
  • United States: 54% support.

Only 7% of respondents globally oppose transitioning away from fossil fuels.

Climate Change Concerns Impacting Daily Lives

The survey also revealed the personal impact of climate change on individuals:

  • Increased Worry: Over half of the global population (53%) are more worried about climate change than they were last year. This concern is higher in LDCs (59%) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS) (71%).
  • Decision-Making: 69% of people globally report that climate change affects their major life decisions, such as where to live or work. This impact is particularly pronounced in LDCs (74%).

Implications for Developing Countries

The survey underscores the particular vulnerability and heightened concern among developing countries:

  • Flood Risks: Many developing nations, such as Bangladesh, are already experiencing severe climate impacts like increased flooding, which exacerbates poverty and displacement.
  • Agricultural Impacts: Countries reliant on agriculture, like Kenya and Ethiopia, face dire consequences from changing weather patterns, threatening food security and livelihoods.
  • Health Risks: Increased temperatures and extreme weather events in developing countries lead to health crises, including the spread of diseases and heat-related illnesses.

Policy Implications and Future Actions

The overwhelming consensus highlighted by the Peoples’ Climate Vote 2024 calls for decisive action from global leaders:

  • Strengthening Climate Policies: Policymakers are urged to heed public opinion and strengthen national commitments under the Paris Agreement.
  • International Cooperation: The call for geopolitical unity emphasizes the need for collaborative global strategies to mitigate climate impacts.
  • Support for Vulnerable Communities: Enhanced support for LDCs and SIDS is crucial to build resilience and adapt to climate impacts.

UNDP’s Climate Promise initiative has already seen significant engagement, with over 100 developing countries submitting enhanced Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and strengthening adaptation goals.

A Call to Action

The Peoples’ Climate Vote 2024 delivers a clear message: global citizens demand urgent, unified, and ambitious climate action. As countries prepare their next round of climate pledges, the voices of people worldwide provide undeniable evidence of the public’s desire for a sustainable and resilient future. Addressing the climate crisis is not just an environmental imperative but a global mandate for peace, security, and prosperity.

By listening to these voices and acting decisively, world leaders can pave the way for a healthier planet and a more stable, equitable world for all.

Wasim Qadri
Wasim Qadrihttp://wasimqadriblog.wordpress.com/
Islamabad based Senior Journalist, TV Show Host, Media Trainer, can be follow on twitter @jaranwaliya

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