Climate Action

Citizen support for climate action

Policy

In spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, Europeans remain very concerned about climate change and support action across the EU to tackle it, according to the latest Eurobarometer survey by the European Commission.

2021 Survey

96% of Europeans have taken at least one action to tackle climate change. 93% of Europeans beleive climate change is a serious problem. 90% of European agree that greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced to make the EU climate-neutral by 2050.

Main survey findings

  • European citizens now identify climate change as the single most serious problem facing the world.
  • Over a quarter of Europeans (29%) chose either climate change (18%), deterioration of nature (7%) or health problems due to pollution (4%) as the single most serious problem we face.
  • 93% of EU citizens see climate change as a serious problem and 78% see it as a very serious problem. 90% of respondents – and at least three quarters in each Member State – agree that greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced to a minimum while offsetting the remaining emissions, in order to make the EU economy climate-neutral by 2050.
  • 87% think the EU should set ambitious targets to increase renewable energy and support energy efficiency.
  • 87% of Europeans agree that tackling climate change should be a priority to improve public health.
  • 92% of respondents think it is important their national government sets ambitious targets to increase the amount of renewable energy used and 87% believe governments should provide support for improving energy efficiency by 2030. At the same time, 75% think their national governments are not doing enough to tackle climate change.
  • 81% believe that more public financial support should be given to the transition to clean energies, even if it means reducing subsidies to fossil fuels.

Boosting the economy and jobs

75% of Europeans agree that funds from the economic recovery plan should be invested in the new green economy. More than eight in ten respondents agree that promoting EU expertise in clean technologies to countries outside the EU can benefit the EU economically (70%), while 78% believe that taking action on climate change will make EU companies more innovative and competitive.

A large majority agree that reducing fossil fuel imports from outside the EU can increase energy security and benefit the EU economically (70%).

Public action

96% of respondents have taken at least one specific action to fight climate change, notably reducing and recycling waste (75% of respondents) and cutting down on consumption of disposable items whenever possible (59%). Almost one third have taken action by adjusting their dietary habits, specifically buying and eating more organic food (32%) and buying and eating less meat (31%).

Adaptation to climate change

Six in ten respondents (62%), and a majority of respondents in all but one Member State, agree that adapting to the adverse impacts of climate change can have positive outcomes for citizens in the EU.

Full report and individual Member State information

Read the full report (Summary)


 
Find out about attitudes towards climate change in countries across the EU:

Austrian flag Austria   French flag France   Maltese flag Malta
Belgian flag Belgium   German flag Germany   Dutch flag The Netherlands
Bulgarian flag Bulgaria   Greek flag Greece   Polish flag Poland
Croatian flag Croatia   Hungarian flag Hungary   Portuguse flag Portugal
Cypriot flag Cyprus   Irish flag Ireland   Romanian flag Romania
Flag of the Czech Republic Czechia   Italian flag Italy   Slovakian flag Slovakia
Danish flag Denmark   Latvian flag Latvia   Slovenian flag Slovenia
Estonian flag Estonia   Lithuanian flag Lithuania   Spanish flag Spain
Finish flag Finland   Flag of Luxembourg Luxembourg   Swedish flag Sweden

Read More
Press release
 
Documentation

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: July 2019

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: July 2017

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: November 2015

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: March 2014

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: October 2011

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: December 2009

Special Eurobarometer on climate change: September 2008