The world is losing interest in “global warming” a survey has found on the eve of the UN’s COP21 climate talks in Paris.
Most people in most of the 20 countries surveyed say they don’t want their leaders to set ambitious climate targets.
Fewer than half describe climate change as a “very serious” problem.
The survey, conducted by GlobeScan for the BBC, could scarcely have come at a worst time for the global environmental movement. After the disastrous failure of the last major climate conference in Copenhagen in 2009, they have been pulling out all the stops to make the talks which begin in Paris next week a success.
Earlier this year UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon flew to the Vatican to enlist the Pope’s support; President Obama has declared that there is “no greater threat” than climate change; John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and the Prince of Wales have all said it’s worse than terrorism; the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has helped out by erasing “the Pause” in global warming; the IUCN has magicked up a study claiming the doing-just-fine polar bears are in trouble….
But the boy has cried wolf too many times and the public just aren’t scared any more.
“The public are less concerned about climate change, and when you put that in the context of the climate conference in Paris, the findings show less support for an ambitious and binding agreement at a global level than there was ahead of COP15 in 2009 in Copenhagen,” said Lionel Bellier, from GlobeScan.
“It’s not an abrupt change of views, the trend seems to be now towards a softer approach.”
According to Benny Peiser of the Global Warming Policy Foundation:
“People have given up on climate hysteria. They don’t want to pay for it and they’re concerned that if they sign up to any binding commitments they will be hurt.”
Peiser believes there are two main reasons for this loss of faith in the green religion.
“First, people are becoming aware that the international community is incapable of reaching any meaningful deal. They think: ‘Well if our governments aren’t taking this problem seriously it can’t be that big a problem.”
Secondly, he says, people are increasingly well informed.
“Twenty years ago, when you had a programme on the BBC about melting ice caps people sat up and noticed. Now they’re so used to these scare stories they’ve become totally cynical. Especially when they read elsewhere that in the first nine months of this year alone, 500 new coal fire power stations were built in Asia…”