Paris Agreement: Australians want our country to “work harder”, not follow President Trump Media release

Jun 01, 2017 - 5:51pm

The vast majority of Australians do not want our country to follow President Trump’s lead if he pulls out of the Paris Agreement on climate change, nation-wide attitudinal research by The Climate Institute shows.

In fact, six out of 10 Australians want Australia to “work harder with other countries” to achieve the goals of the Agreement, if the US withdraws. Another 26 per cent want us to maintain our current commitments within the Agreement.

“87 per cent of Australians do not want our country to step back from its commitments in any way – and almost two thirds want us to step up our efforts to help make up for the United States,” said Acting CEO of The Climate institute, Olivia Kember.

“Along with the leaders of EU nations, China, India, major global businesses and investors, Australian citizens recognize that it’s in our own interest to stay in the Paris Agreement and make it work.”

Under the international climate agreement, struck in Paris in December 2015, 197 nations committed to limit global warming to less than 2°C below pre-industrial levels, and make best efforts to keep the limit to 1.5°C.

147 of these countries – including Australia – have ratified the agreement, which entered into force in November last year.

The leaders of India, China, France, Germany, and many major businesses have called on the Trump Administration to stay in the Agreement.

“Australians want action because they can see that the economic stability and environmental health of our country and the planet as a whole are at risk if we fail to deal with climate change,” she said. “Australians do not support President Trump’s decision to pull out at all.”

The Climate Institute conducted a national quantitative survey of 2,660 Australians, as well as eight focus groups in Adelaide, Brisbane, Parramatta and Townsville in late April and early May, for the 2017 iteration of its annual Climate of the Nation study. This research examined Australians’ attitudes to climate change science, impacts, and solutions. This year’s research has a particular focus on energy.

The findings of The Climate Institute’s Climate of the Nation 2017 research will be released in late June.

For media inquiries:   Brinsley Marlay ● Media Manager ● 0422 140 555
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