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New survey reveals strong views on climate change

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Climate change impact – a significant factor in job hunting

Seventy-six percent of young Europeans believe that the climate impact of prospective employers is an important factor when job hunting. This is according to the second part of the 2022-2023 European Investment Bank (EIB) Climate Survey.

The survey explores people’s views on climate change. Some of the results from the latest yearly European Investment Bank (EIB) Climate Survey, conducted in August 2022, included:

  • 76% of Europeans aged 20-29 say the climate impact of prospective employers is an important factor when job hunting and 22% say it is even a top priority.
  • 66% of all European respondents favour stricter government measures to impose a change in personal behaviour (72% of people under 30).
  • 79% of European respondents favour labelling all food to help limit the impact on climate and the environment.
  • 62% of Europeans say they would pay more for climate-friendly food.
  • 56% would be in favour of a carbon budget system to set a cap on the most climate-damaging consumption (62% of people under 30).

With the war in Ukraine continuing, rising energy prices and inflation have dramatically increased concerns about declining purchasing power in Europe. Climate change, however, remains the second biggest challenge facing Europeans, according to respondents. Seventy-two percent of respondents said they are convinced that their behaviour can make a difference in addressing the situation.

Many believe that the government has a role in encouraging individual behavioural change, with 66% favouring stricter government measures to force change in people’s behaviour. In addition, 72% of respondents under 30 agreed they would welcome such measures.

Increasing numbers of job seekers entering the workforce each year are looking at employers’ climate credentials when job hunting. Among the respondents, 62% say it is important that prospective employers prioritise sustainability, and 16% say it is a top priority.

Among people aged 20 to 29, typically first job seekers, 76% say that sustainability is an important factor in their choice of employer, and 22% say it is a top priority.

Many European respondents (56%) favoured a carbon budget system that would allocate a fixed number of yearly credits to each individual. These could be spent on items with a big carbon footprint (non-essential goods, flights, meat, etc.). This option was very popular among Chinese respondents (83%), but Americans were less supportive at 49%. Interestingly, the majority of Europeans favour this measure regardless of income.

Food production is responsible for a significant share of greenhouse gas emissions. To encourage people to make more sustainable choices when grocery shopping, 79% of Europeans suggested labelling all food products with their climate footprint.

A further 62% of Europeans said they would be willing to pay slightly more for food produced locally and sustainably. This willingness to pay more for food spans all income groups.

Another efficient way to limit greenhouse gas emissions is to reduce the consumption of meat and dairy products. Fifty-one percent said they would support limiting the purchase of these products to fight climate change.

Ambroise Fayolle, EIB Vice-President, said: The outcome of the EIB Climate Survey shows that Europeans are willing to help fight climate change at the individual level. As the EU climate bank, we welcome this commitment. It complements our role of financing green services such as sustainable transport, renewable energy, and energy-efficient buildings. In 2022, we supported green projects in Europe with investments amounting to €32.4 billion, many of which helped create new jobs. We will continue to support the acceleration of the green transition, one in which everyone can play their part and where no one is left behind.”

 

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