Green behaviours struggle to get off the ground

Despite belief in human-caused climate change rising from 76% to 84% between 2011 and last year, citizens’ motivation to drive greener cars or use polluting cars less has hardly changed. […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Despite belief in human-caused climate change rising from 76% to 84% between 2011 and last year, citizens’ motivation to drive greener cars or use polluting cars less has hardly changed.

That’s according to a new report from the UK Government, which suggests the public value personal freedom and convenience over saving the environment.

Willingness to get a car with lower carbon dioxide emissions remains at 78% and the proportion happy to drive less for the sake of the environment has also remained stable at 40%.

Motorway congestion is perceived as much less of a problem than congestion in towns and cities – last year, just under a third said it was a serious or very serious issue, compared with half who thought the build-up of traffic in towns and cities was as serious.

The number of people unwilling to reduce air flights to combat climate change has increased since 2011, with around two-thirds saying they should be able to travel by plane as much as they like.

However, 46% of respondents in 2016 said the price of a plane ticket should reflect the environmental damage that flying causes, even if this makes air travel more expensive.