NEW YORK, Sept. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
Climate Week NYC Opening Ceremony, New York, September 18, 2017:
A new survey finds that a majority of people globally are optimistic about our ability to address climate change, with 64 percent of global citizens – and 60 percent in the US – believing we can address climate change if we take action now. Overall, 33% strongly agree this is the case, and 32% tend to agree. Only 11 percent disagree that we can address climate change if we take action now.
The survey, conducted by global market research firm Ipsos on behalf of non-profit organization The Climate Group and change agency Futerra, polled online adults aged 16-64 in 26 countries and is at the heart of a new campaign, #ClimateOptimist, launched today to change the dominant narrative on climate change. The campaign's partners include Mars, VF Corp, Interface, Ashden and the DivestInvest movement.
Only 4% of people globally believe that the Earth's climate is not changing, so there is no need to do anything about it.
However, 61 percent of survey respondents said they hear much more about the negative impacts of climate change than they do about progress on reducing it.
This may be contributing to the belief that although the climate is changing, humanity can do nothing to stop it, a mindset the campaign team has dubbed 'Climate Fatalism'. 14 percent of people globally fall into this category, believing that while the climate is changing, humanity can do nothing to stop it.
Young people are especially likely to agree with some fatalistic statements; for example, 22 percent of those aged 16-35 agree that it is now too late to stop climate change, so there is no point in trying, compared with 18 percent of 35-49 year olds and 16 percent of 50-64 year olds.
"Solving climate change starts with the belief that we can, so on the one hand it is thrilling to learn that Climate Optimists already far outweigh Pessimists globally," said Solitaire Townsend, Co-founder of Futerra, speaking at the launch. "However, the dangerous levels of fatalism, especially among young people, give cause for alarm. There are many reasons to believe we'll solve climate change, but doom, fear and guilt dominate media coverage of this issue. The #ClimateOptimist campaign is designed to change that narrative, because science shows that optimism spurs action."
The #ClimateOptimist campaign seeks to raise awareness of the solutions to climate change to shift the dominant narrative around the topic and combat fatalism about our future. The approach is grounded in decades of scientific evidence which show that optimism compels action. Specifically, #ClimateOptimist asks people to:
- Opt in as a Climate Optimist, and share your belief that we can solve this.
- Take climate action in your own life, by doing things that will make you healthier and happier.
- And shine a light on solutions. Find out about the amazing progress already happening.
"Those of us working on climate change every day encounter many exciting solutions that are emerging through policy, business and new technology – but the general public doesn't always hear this good news," said Helen Clarkson, CEO of The Climate Group. "This survey sends a promising signal that the world is ready to hear more about the solutions, and work together to solve climate change."
Find out more at www.ClimateOptimist.org
Quotes in support of the campaign
"We're optimists because we believe if we set bold science based goals then human ingenuity will find a way to advance solutions," said Barry Parkin, Chief Sustainability Officer, Mars. "We're already realizing the business case for renewable energy. That's why we're fans of wind and other renewable energy sources."
"We're optimists because we know we're not alone," said Letitia Webster, VP, Global Corporate Sustainability, VF Corp. "From the 193 countries that signed The Paris Agreement to the 106 companies globally committed to going 100 percent renewable alongside us, millions of people around the globe are dedicated to innovative solutions to address the challenges. They give us confidence that we can solve this together."
"We are climate optimists because we know we can address climate change if we have the right mindset and the right plan," said Jay D. Gould, CEO of Interface. "We need to shift our thinking from how we limit our impact on the climate, to how we create a climate fit for life."
About The Climate Group
The Climate Group works internationally with leading businesses, states and regions to deliver a world of net zero greenhouse gas emissions and greater prosperity for all. Our focus is on collaborative programs with corporate and government partners that deliver impact on a global scale. The Climate Group is an international non-profit with offices in Beijing, London, New Delhi and New York.
Futerra is a global change agency with offices in New York, London, Stockholm and Mexico City. Established in 2001, Futerra works with the world's largest brands, breakthrough entrepreneurs and national governments to change the world for the better. We join the logic of sustainability strategy with the magic of powerful creative.
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