Deborah Cotton writes in The Conversation (16.6.16) about public sentiment in Australia regarding action on climate change and emissions reduction, suggesting that support for government policy responses is stronger now than before the last federal election.
‘In April 2011, not long after Julia Gillard was returned to power in the 2010 federal election, I asked a representative sample of Australians about their attitudes to climate policy.
‘Climate was a water-cooler issue at the time. The carbon tax legislation had been introduced into Parliament in March, paving the way for a subsequent emissions trading scheme.
‘That scheme bit the dust in 2014 after becoming a hotly debated issue during the rancorous 2013 election campaign, but carbon policy has not had the same high profile during the current campaign. My colleagues and I decided to repeat our survey and see whether attitudes really have cooled on global warming.
‘Despite climate policy being something of a sleeper issue in this election, our results suggest that concern about the climate is more widespread now than it was five years ago.’