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A new survey shows that the majority of people are willing to do their part to help the environment, even if it isn't easy

A new poll by BBC News provides perhaps the most comprehensive to date look at the current level of public awareness of environmental issues and public initiative to make sacrifices in hopes of fixing them.

The large study surveyed 22,000 people in 21 countries, including many in the two largest CO2 polluters, the U.S. and China.  Four out of five people stated they would probably be ready to make lifestyle changes to reduce emissions.

Taxes were a bit stickier issue.  Taxes on oil and coal enjoyed a smaller base of support, but still represented the majority opinion, with 50% for them and 44% opposed.  Many of the opposed stated that they would change their opinion to support if it could be guaranteed that the funds would be diverted to finance alternative energy or alternative energy research.

The total figures were that 83% of people either were ready or were probably ready to make sacrifices in their daily lives to help the environment.

People in the U.S. and Europe agreed that fuel prices would have to rise in order to get people to lower their consumption, as they are stuck in their ways.

Italy and Russia did not agree, as these countries are already experiencing dramatically fossil fuel costs.

South Korea, India, and Nigeria also showed smaller margins of support for higher energy costs, though the majority of responders still felt that higher costs would be needed to lower consumption.

Interestingly the Chinese were the most willing to support taxes on polluting fossil fuels.  A whopping 85% of Chinese surveyed supported taxes on fossil fuels to reduce reliance on them.

While experiencing many recent quality concerns, including tainted cancer drugs, China has been rapidly becoming a world leader in many technology sectors.  The results of this survey demonstrate that despite past problems the Chinese people have a strong desire for their country to develop into an environmental leader.

In total 22,182 people were interviewed in the following countries:

UK, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt,France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, thePhilippines, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, and the United States.

Interviews occurred either face to face or via telephone between May 29 and July 26, 2007.

Increased public awareness can be attributed to a broad array of sources.  One is the mass media -- news channels have been increasing their environmental issue coverage.  Another source of awareness is simple observation. People see pictures of rainforests stripped bare and it becomes blatantly obvious the need to protect our planet.  The U.N. also can take some credit for its constant climate research, as well as research into other environmental topics, such as deforestation and biofuels

A little credit even can go to recent Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Al Gore, whose movie "An Inconvenient Truth" brought an increased public interest in environmental issues.

Regardlessly of who convinced these people that helping the environment was a good idea, that is the conclusion they have come to.  It appears that the majority of people finally are ready and eager for environmental change -- politicians listen up, these are thoughts of your constituents.

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RE: One other comment
By kelman6969 on 11/6/2007 1:08:23 PM , Rating: 4
The link to the article had a link a PDF document that gave some sample questions that I have included below in quotes. Other than the assumption that global warming/climate change is a problem, the rest seems pretty straight, but I am not an expert. I suspect the 85% who are willing to sacrifice lifestyle is reflective of the Evangelist "Al Gore" and his success at prostylesing some and influencing many to his ...... religion.

"M6. Please tell me if you think each of the following will definitely be necessary, probably be necessary, probably not be necessary, or definitely not be necessary in order to address the problem of climate change or global warming? READ IN ORDER AND ROTATE
a) To increase the cost of the types of energy that most cause climate change, such as coal and oil/petrol, in order to encourage individuals and industry to use less.
01 - Will definitely be necessary
02 - Probably be necessary
03 - Probably not be necessary
04 - Definitely not be necessary
99 - Don’t know / No answer
b) For individuals in [country] to make changes in their lifestyle and behaviour in order to reduce the amount of climate changing gases they produce.
M7. Would you favour or oppose raising taxes on the types of energy, such as coal and oil/petrol, that most cause climate change in order to encourage individuals and businesses to use less of these? Would you . . . READ IN ORDER. CODE ONE ONLY.
01 - Strongly favour
02 - Somewhat favour
03 - Somewhat oppose
04 - Strongly oppose
99 - Don’t know / No answer
M8A. What if the revenues of this energy tax were devoted only to increasing energy efficiency and developing energy sources that do not produce climate change? Would you… READ IN ORDER. CODE ONE ONLY.
M8B. What if this energy tax was introduced at the same time as your other taxes were reduced by the same amount, keeping your total taxes at the current level even with the energy tax? Would you . . . READ IN ORDER. CODE ONE ONLY.
01 - Strongly favour
02 - Somewhat favour
03 - Somewhat oppose
04 - Strongly oppose
99 - Don’t know / No answer"

RE: One other comment
By Screwballl on 11/7/2007 3:11:14 PM , Rating: 2
one key part says it right there... how many of those polled are educated enough on the subject to give a reasonable and educated answer?

the key lies right here:

99 - Don’t know / No answer

I bet a majority of those polled are not educated enough to give an answer to portray an adequate representative of this world. I would say less than 5% of this world is. I know I am not. I can give an opinion based on lack of knowledge but presented as facts and call myself Al Gore but that doesn't mean I know any more than the average citizen.

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