The European Commission has published the results of its new Special Eurobarometer survey on the attitudes of European citizens towards the environment today. Most Europeans want more environmental protection and believe that this responsibility should be shared among the industry, national governments, the EU and citizens themselves.
This survey is a follow-up to the Special Eurobarometer from October 2017 and is based on face-to-face interviews with 27,498 respondents from different social and demographic groups within the 27 EU Member States and the United Kingdom that were conducted in December 2019.
These are further insights:
For the vast majority of Europeans environmental protection is important (94 percent) and climate change (91 percent) constitutes an important and serious problem. 83 percent of respondents say European legislative action is needed to protect the environment.
Overall, respondents consider climate change, air pollution, and waste as the three most important environmental issues in the EU. 78 percent of respondents believe that environmental issues have a direct effect on their daily life and health.
Among respondents, there is substantial support for policy measures aimed at reducing plastic waste and littering. In the respondent’s view local authorities should provide more and better collection facilities for plastic waste.
Respondents also believe that companies should design products in a way that facilitates the recycling of plastic and the industry and retailers should try to reduce plastic packaging.
Virginijus Sinkevičius, Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries, said: "The results of this survey are no surprise to us. With the European Green Deal these are exactly the citizens' concerns that we want to address. I am encouraged to see that there is support for the fundamental changes we are going to make in our society and economy, and that people want to play an active role in this change."