Green tax revolt: Britons ‘will not foot bill to save planet’

Green tax revolt: Britons ‘will not foot bill to save planet’

Thinking about the recent weather experienced by the UK, two in five (40%) Brits believe that ?extreme weather is becoming more common and blame global warming for this.? This is higher amongst the younger generation, with almost half (46%) of 18 to 34 year olds feeling this way compared to a third (33%) of those aged 55 and over.

However, just over a third (34%) believe that although extreme weather is becoming more common this is just a natural cycle and nothing to do with global warming.

Just over one in ten (12%) do not think that extreme weather is becoming any more common.

Thinking about climate change, more than a quarter (26%) of Brits believe that climate change is 75% due to human activities.

However, one in ten (10%) believe that climate change is entirely natural and nothing at all to do with human activities.

Although we may not all believe that human activities are responsible for changes in the environment, it seems that, as a nation, we have a fairly good understanding of the concepts associated with this. 84% of us are able to correctly identify that the definition of the term ?Carbon Footprint? is ?A measure, in units of carbon dioxide, of the impact our activities have on the environment in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases we produce?.

As a nation, we seem keen to make a difference to the environment and appear to be changing our behaviour accordingly.

When asked about actions taken to be greener and/ or reduce our carbon footprint over the last 12 months, just 6% of Brits admit to having done nothing specifically green.

The most popular actions taken by Brits trying to be greener are; to recycle more (81%), to re-use plastic bags (81%), to conserve energy in the home by improving insulation or turning down thermostats (53%) and to take showers instead of baths (50%).

When it comes to thinking about government assistance in tackling environmental issues, more than a third (38%) of Brits would not be at all willing to pay higher taxes, even if the money raised through the increase were spent on combating green issues, with more males (42%) feeling this way than females (35%).

In fact, over two thirds (67%) of respondents agree with the statement that
?The green agenda ? especially global warming ? has been hijacked to provide excuses for ever higher taxation, regardless of whether those taxes actually help?.

When buying food, it seems that price (86%) and value for money (85%) are more important to consumers than green issues such as ?food miles? (33%) or the corporate social responsibility reputation (31%) of the company from which they are buying.

Brits believe that concerns about the environment will stay with us for quite some time to come, with almost half (47%) of respondents believing we will be recycling all our products in 20 years time and more than a third (35%) thinking we will all be using green energy in our homes.

Opinium Research carried out an online poll of 2,002 British adults between 11th and 14th of April
2008. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria. This survey was to look at
people?s attitudes towards the environment and how green we really are.