Majority of Canadians call for more robust efforts to curb climate change
October 23, 2014 – Nearly two-thirds (64%) of Canadians say this country should be a global leader on environmental issues, while as many (63%) say the country’s official response on the climate change file is “too weak.
These are among the findings of an online survey self-commissioned by the Angus Reid Institute (ARI).
On the issue of whether humans have played a role in climate change, the survey shows two-in-five (38%) Canadians say this not the case.
When asked how much of a threat climate change poses for the planet, three-quarters (75%) say the threat is either very serious, or serious (38%, and 37% respectively). Twelve per cent thought the threat was minor, while seven per cent felt it was not a threat.
Regionally, half of those in Canadian prairie provinces (53% in Alberta, and 48% in Manitoba and Saskatchewan) are less inclined to believe climate change is a result of human activity. Nearly seven-in-ten respondents (67%) in Atlantic Canada and Quebec believe it is human caused; slightly fewer in British Columbia and Ontario (63% each) agree.
Opinions over time
Based on finding from earlier surveys, opinions have oscillated over time. In November 2009, an Angus Reid Global survey found 63 per cent of surveyed Canadians believed global warming was caused by human emissions. This opinion has remained consistent when compared to a measurement from October 2010 (60 per cent), yet it reached its lowest level in August 2011, when just over half believed this to be the case (52%). In March 2013, opinion on this question was at 58 per cent.
Image Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center