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22.10.2020 – 10:10

Vodafone Institut für Gesellschaft und Kommunikation GmbH

Climate change: Majority in the EU sees digitisation as part of the solution

Berlin (ots)

  • Vodafone Institute's poll "Digitising Europe Pulse": More than half (54%) of the Europeans state that digital technology can play a big role to solve the problems of climate change.
  • 65% say that tackling climate change is an overarching issue for citizens, politics and businesses.
  • 72% are willing to bear higher costs if necessary.
  • Big majority consider environmentally responsible behaviour in their everyday life.
  • Background: EU commission is proposing a 55% cut in emissions by 2030. Additionally, all national recovery and resilience plans must now focus strongly on both reforms and investments supporting the green transition, with a minimum of 37% of the EUR672.5 billion recovery and resilience facility being earmarked to climate.
  • Representative survey across 13 EU member states conducted by Kantar.

With regards to climate change, a majority in numerous EU countries sees digitisation rather as part of the solution than as part of the problem.

This reveals a new survey of the Vodafone Institute, the European think-tank of the Vodafone Group. More than half of the surveyed Europeans state that digital technology can play a big role to solve environmental problems. Only 14% sees digital technology as one of the reasons for climate change.

Furthermore, 65% of Europeans think each and everyone has to fight against climate change, while institutions such as national governments follow behind.

Most people (72%) agree more or less that the EU must comprise strict rules with respective costs for businesses and citizens. Nevertheless, the preferred way of EU climate change action is via technological innovations (approved by 81%). On the other hand, less than half of the surveyed EU citizens (42%) have so far heard of the "Green Deal for Europe".

Inger Paus, Managing Director of the Vodafone Institute, said: "There is no longer any doubt that the issue of climate change has reached large sections of society. Most people are, in principle, willing to make a contribution on an individual level. Remarkable: Digital technologies are rather seen as part of the solution - not of the problem. Politics and business are called upon to take up this positive trend".

The results are particularly important in the light of the EU Commission's recent plans. The European Commission has now asserted that all national recovery and resilience plans must focus strongly on both reforms and investments supporting the green transition. In fact, a minimum of 37% of the EUR672.5 billion recovery and resilience facility is earmarked to climate. The EU Commission has also raised its climate ambition, proposing a 55% cut in emissions by 2030.

Asked if the EU should take on a pioneering role in fighting climate change, all in all, 53% agree that the EU should take the lead. But the answer depends very much on the nationality: The prevalent opinion in the Netherlands, Estonia and Poland is that instead global agreements must be reached. In contrast, in Portugal, Greece, Spain and Ireland, an active role of the EU is favoured.

More findings of the survey:

  • The big majority (87%) consider environmentally responsible behaviour in their everyday life when it comes to purchasing decisions
  • More specifically, 72% state that they are using their smartphone for a longer period and thus avoid buying a new smartphone too often.
  • Furthermore, 69% avoid single-use plastics and 60% are buying locally products (e.g. food or clothes).

The results are part of the "Digitising Europe Pulse" series. The survey was conducted by Kantar. For this purpose, 13.000 people in 13 EU countries were interviewed via an online-survey. Previous parts examined people's attitudes to the impact of COVID-19 and the EU's digital agenda.

Vodafone Institute for Society and Communications

The Institute is Vodafone's think-tank. We explore the potential and responsible use of digital technologies for innovation, growth and sustainable social impact. Through research and events, we provide thought leadership and offer a platform for dialogue between business, academia and politics.

We are committed to improving access to technology for all parts of society, developing and supporting projects on the ground for female empowerment and digital education. The wide-ranging expertise of the Advisory Board members reflects the Institute's intention to act as a cross-sectoral platform.

Contact:

Press contact
Friedrich Pohl
Head of Communications

Mobile: +49 172 71 55 900

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Original content of: Vodafone Institut für Gesellschaft und Kommunikation GmbH, transmitted by news aktuell

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