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COP28: Climate change - only a quarter (26%) of the UK feel optimistic about the world young people will inherit

New research out from The National Lottery Community Fund shows that people in the UK are worried about the impact climate change could have on their local community and particularly on young people. Two in three people (65%) believe climate change will reduce quality of life for future generations, and many say they are already factoring it in when making their own big life stage decisions:

  • Nearly 6 in 10 people (56%) across the UK are concerned about the impact climate change might have on their local community
  • Over four in ten (42%) of 16–34 year olds say climate change will affect whether they have children, while more than half (56%) say it will impact where they decide to live
  • Many believe quality of life will suffer (65%) while a majority (57%) agree that climate change will deepen existing health inequalities
  • Despite the lack of climate optimism, a majority (64%) still believe in the power of individual action to make a positive difference.

As the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) assembles this Friday (8 December) to discuss the power of youth action, new research from The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest community funder in the UK, reveals the impact climate concerns are having on people’s optimism and life choices for the future.

Nearly six in ten people (56%) across the UK are concerned about the impact climate change might have on their local community, rising to 62% amongst young people aged 16 to 34.

When thinking about the world younger generations will inherit, only a quarter (26%) of people across the UK are optimistic about what this will look like. Many believe quality of life will suffer (65%) while 57% agree that climate change will deepen existing health inequalities.

Climate change considerations are already influencing many people's life decisions. Over four in ten (42%) of 16-34 year olds say that it will affect whether they have children or not. And while 41% of adults overall say that climate change will affect where they decide to live, this rises to 56% of 16–34 year olds, suggesting that younger people are already bearing the biggest impact on life choices.

The results also reveal a lack of optimism in climate action at a macro level, such as global politics and including the COP28 conference. A majority (65%) say that there is not enough action from other countries to tackle climate change, and 51% are worried that it is too late now for actions from the conference to make a difference. However, the recent announcement of the $400 million Loss and Damage Fund*, for poorer countries most impacted by climate change, may change this opinion.

Despite these climate concerns, a majority of people (64%) believe in the power of individual action to make a positive difference on climate change in communities – such as recycling, using public transport, and having fewer holidays abroad. 65+ year olds are most likely to believe this (69%), with 55-64 year olds close behind (66%).

The National Lottery Community Fund, which commissioned the survey of over 8,000 UK adults, supports communities to be more resilient, inclusive and environmentally sustainable, with key missions including helping children and young people to thrive.

As part of its drive, it has awarded over £60 million to communities across the UK to tackle the impact of climate change through its Climate Action Fund, since 2019.

Click here for the full press release

 

Channel website: https://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/

Original article link: https://www.tnlcommunityfund.org.uk/news/press-releases/2023-12-08/cop28-only-quarter-uk-feel-optimistic-world-young-people-inherit

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