Most young people unaware of climate change, says study

November 20, 2015 12:00 am | Updated 05:42 am IST - NEW DELHI:

A survey conducted in four countries has revealed that most young people lack awareness about the challenges posed by climate change. It added that those who knew about it showed a degree of scepticism about a solution.

The report titled ‘Climate Action: Youth Voices’, which was released on Thursday, collates the views of about 1,000 people from 18 to 30 years of age in India, Vietnam, the United Kingdom and Italy.

Released by Professor Matthew Hibberd of Scotland’s Stirling University and Alka Tomar of the Centre for Environment Communication, the report finds that young people are “hopeful” of a legally binding agreement coming out of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.

Ms. Tomar said that of the about 500 people surveyed in India, “around 75 per cent” lacked awareness about climate change.

Prof Hibberd, head of Communications, Media and Culture at Stirling, added that with social media the level of awareness among the youth should have been greater.

“But, there is still a lack of awareness. Among those who were informed, there was a level of hope but also a degree of scepticism over whether any agreement in Paris will be ratified and implemented,” he said.

Prof. Hibberd was referring to the previous Kyoto Protocol, where the United States took the lead in, but failed to ratify it.

“Young people see Paris as important for the Obama legacy,” he said, referring to U.S. President Barack Obama, who will be demitting office in 2016.

As per the focus groups the researchers interacted with, the failure to come up with a legally binding agreement in Paris would have a “disastrous impact”.

It added that those who knew about

the challenges posed by climate change showed a degree of scepticism about

a possible solution

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