Two thirds of people believe in the need to curb air travel to tackle climate change, a survey suggests.
More than a third of those quizzed are “very” or “extremely worried” about climate change – up from just a fifth three years ago, the poll for the UK’s new Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformations (CAST) found.
Almost half of more than 2,000 adults questioned by YouGov for the centre, which is led by scientists from Cardiff University, felt they had become more worried about climate change than they were 12 months ago.
When asked why their views had changed, people cited reasons including extreme weather events, greater media coverage and a sense of a lack of political and society-wide action to tackle climate change.
More than two thirds agreed that people should limit the amount of flying they do, while just 15% thought such a move was not needed.
More than half thought people should cut down on the amount of meat in their diets to address climate change. A total of 37% thought it was not necessary.
The £5 million centre, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), is a collaboration between Cardiff, Manchester, York and East Anglia Universities, and the charity Climate Outreach.
Professor Lorraine Whitmarsh, director of the Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformations said: “Our new survey findings make clear that most people feel climate change is an urgent issue, and are willing to make significant changes to their own lifestyles to help tackle it.”
She said changing travel and food habits were among the most significant things individuals could do to reduce their carbon footprint, and said: “It’s very encouraging that there’s support amongst the public for making these changes.”