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Brits are "increasingly concerned" about climate change

Despite being "increasingly concerned" about tackling climate change in the UK, it turns out that many Brits don't fully understand the sources of carbon emissions.

That's according to a new poll from the WWF-UK, which found that more than one-third (37 per cent) of people belief that the December floods were caused as a result of climate change.

When questioned about the costs of generating energy, nearly 20 per cent of those surveyed said they believe that nuclear is the cheapest form of power generation. They also believe that onshore wind was more costly than offshore - although the reverse is actually true.

The survey also revealed that the British public is confused about which sectors contribute the most to climate change.

It found that people tend to "underestimate" some of the major sources of emissions.

For example, more people questioned believed that transport, excluding aviation, is the primary source of carbon emissions.

However, energy use in buildings is the second-largest source of carbon emissions after power generation - and these numbers can easily be lowered with efficiency measures like thermal wall insulation.

And it's not just the public that has the wrong idea about energy emissions.

The WWF-UK poll also claims that nearly a quarter of MPs believe agriculture contributes the most carbon. In actuality, it ranks behind power generation, buildings and transport.

Commenting on the research, Emma Pinchbeck, head of climate and energy at WWF-UK, said that the findings demonstrate just how important it is for informed and accurate public debate.

"It is particularly striking that incorrect views - such as thinking that nuclear offers good value for money - reflect government messaging," she explained.

"Neither MPs nor the public identified the big role that their homes and businesses play in UK emissions," she noted, adding that this should be of concern to the government, especially since Britain is missing its targets for reducing demand.

"A national drive on energy efficiency would help raise awareness of cheap solutions that will cut bills and help save the planet," she said.


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