Climate change has evolved into one of the extensively burgeoning issues of the 21st century. Earth’s average temperature has increased by 1.5°F over the past century and is propelled to rise another 0.5 to 8.6°F over the next hundred years (EPA, 2017). This temperature modification would result in dangerous shifts in our Earth’s climate, which would be detrimental to all life on earth. Insight and comprehension of the climate change scenario among the peoples are valuable as it facilitates adaptation and mitigation undertakings. However, public awareness of climate change varies from nation to nation. The past investigations of scientists have about the use of surveys to understand more about how people think about climate change. A survey report entitled ‘European Perceptions of Climate Change (EPCC)’ (2017) shows that there is less concern for climate change in the United Kingdom while the French are more worried about this than Germans and Norwegians. It has also been demonstrated that women are generally more worried than men on the issue of climate change. Another specific research conducted in China analyzed China’s public knowledge of climate change in terms of several influence factors. They found that some individuals were willing to take litigations and had assurance that the government could deal with it, while others (27% of respondents) believed that climate change was just a natural consequence and didn’t bother mankind. Public feelings on climate change in the USA and Europe were captured by Lorenzoni and Pidegeon (2006). Though, limited research has been conducted on how the perceptions about climate change vary in developing and developed countries.
Moreover, all nations are staggering under the impacts of climate change. Climate Change was majorly perceived as Rising in global temperature (84.6%), Change in Earth’s Climate (81.3%), Melting glaciers (72.9%), and Global Sea Rise (70.1%) according to the majority of people all over the world. Findings in Turkey where 72% of the people think and said that they were provided information and awareness about climate change through the media. Results show that the awareness regarding the Paris Climate Agreement is more in the USA (78.69%) than in India (66.67%) and other countries. Also, countries attribute anthropogenic interventions as the primary cause of climate change. The need of the hour is to take necessary steps in promoting ‘Nature-based solutions. Awareness regarding international treaties on climate change like the Paris Climate Agreement is more in the USA than in India and other countries.
The majority of the People all over the world are not satisfied with the steps taken by the concerned authorities in combating climate change. Nonetheless, some believe that the government has a significant role to play in promoting clean and renewable energy. In India, apart from this, the major focus is also on ‘adaptation’ and ‘mitigation’ plans. Hence, to deal with such a pressing concern of climate change, a more focused and dedicated effort is needed in this direction.
In my opinion, The fight against climate change can only be won by the collaborative efforts of the common man, government, think tanks, and NGOs.
“In summary, there is a need to understand one’s responsibility in tackling this issue.”
By Vijay Prakash