‘People are demanding change’: Youngsters lead call for green businesses and jobs
Written by Hit Music Radio News on 26/01/2021
Demand for green businesses and jobs is higher in the UK than anywhere else, according to a global United Nations survey promoted via mobile gaming apps.
More than 1.2 million people took part in the “people’s climate vote” conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and University of Oxford, including more than half a million under-18s.
It found 73% of UK respondents want the government to prioritise environmentally-friendly employment, with 81% describing climate change as a global emergency, against a survey average of 64%
Across all 50 countries surveyed, conserving forests, using renewables, adopting climate-friendly farming techniques, and investing more money in green business were the most popular options for tackling the crisis.
In the UK, where 21,189 people responded to the survey, youngsters were more likely to think climate change was a global emergency, with 86% of under-18s saying it was.
Out of 18 environmental policy options people could show their support for, the most popular in the UK were using solar, wind and renewable power, conserving land and forests and keeping the ocean and waterways healthy.
The least popular option was promoting plant-based diets, which was supported by 43% of those who took part.
Cassie Flynn, strategic adviser on climate change at the UNDP, told Sky News: “Increasingly people are realising they are living in an era of climate impacts, and when we start to look around us and start to see these global events – fires in Australia or California, or the category storms in the Caribbean – people are looking around and they’re scared. They are realising they are living the climate crisis and now they want to now live the solutions.”
Professor Alastair Fitter, an ecologist from the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, said the survey’s findings are reflected in an increasing demand for conservation.
The trust was set up 75 years ago to care for Askham Bog, an unspoiled ancient wetland on the outskirts of York.
Last year 7,000 people objected when a proposed housing development threatened to reduce the bog’s vital water level, and the plans were refused at a public inquiry.
“People are demanding change,” he said.
“At the moment not enough of them are doing it vocally to show people in power that this matters, but I think that is changing.
“Five or 10 years ago when I talked to people about climate change they would nod and say ‘Yes, yes, yes’, and now they are actually asking ‘What can I do?'”
© Sky News 2020