Four in 10 Singaporeans think govt is responsible for taking action on climate change

Channel NewsAsia 23 Mar 14;

SINGAPORE: A survey commissioned by the National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS) has found that 40.1 per cent of Singaporeans think the government is mainly responsible for taking action on climate change.

This is up sharply from the 2011 figure of 26.3 per cent.

39.2 per cent felt that individuals have the main responsibility to tackle climate change, down from 56.3 per cent in 2011.

The survey, conducted in 2013, interviewed 1,000 Singapore residents aged 15 and above.

70.2 per cent of respondents polled said they were concerned about climate change, a 3.6 percentage-point fall from 2011.

In terms of how Singapore would be affected by climate change, the 65.6 per cent cited frequent and severe extreme weather events such as heavy rainfall and dry spells.

54.4 per cent were concerned about the impact on public health, such as increased heat stress and the spread of some infectious diseases.

62.7 per cent were of the view that climate change will affect them personally. Their top concerns were health impact and hotter weather that climate change could bring about.

One in two respondents thought of climate change as an urgent problem, but 47.5 per cent felt that individuals could make a difference in dealing with climate change.

26.4 per cent said they were not willing to pay more to support products and practices that address climate change, while 41.5 per cent said they are willing to pay up to 10 per cent more.

NCCS said contrary to public perception, there is much that an individual can do in addressing and adapting to climate change.

It launched the 2014 National Climate Change Competition on Sunday with the theme #change4future, which highlights the need for Singaporeans to take action to address climate change and learn to deal with the changing climate that affects them and the environment they live in.

It is calling for the public to submit short videos that could inspire Singaporeans to tackle climate change.

"Scientists have affirmed that human activities are one of the main causes of climate change, and this could lead to extreme weather events, such as more frequent and intense rainfall, heat waves and cold spells becoming more frequent," said Mr Yuen Sai Kuan, director of 3P Network Division from NCCS.

He added: "We hope that the competition will help raise awareness on such issues and produce inspiring videos that will help spread the message on the need to change our habits which affect the environment."

Students and members of the public can register to take part in the competition at by April 22.

- CNA/fa

Survey shows fewer Singaporeans worried about climate change
Joy Fang Today Online 24 Mar 14;

SINGAPORE — Even though Singapore has been hit by unprecedented environmental issues in recent times, such as the prolonged dry spell in the last two months and the severe bout of haze last year that saw the Pollutant Standards Index reading hit a record 401, a survey has shown that people here seem less concerned about climate change than before.

The survey, which was conducted by the National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS), found that about 70 per cent of respondents were concerned about climate change, down from 74 per cent in 2011 when a similar study was conducted.

Also, fewer feel that individuals are responsible for taking action to tackle the issue. Only about 39 per cent — down from 56 per cent in a similar survey two years ago — said it is up to individuals to address climate change.

In contrast, many more now think the responsibility lies with the Government — 40 per cent, sharply higher than the 26 per cent in 2011.

This is despite almost four in five respondents saying Singapore will be affected by climate change — with most of these citing extreme weather events as well as impact on public health as examples of possible effects.

Nevertheless, about 63 per cent felt they were doing their part in tackling climate issues. Turning off electrical appliances at the main power source when they are not in use and taking public transport or car-pooling were the most commonly-practised habits, survey results showed.

The poll also found that the desire to save money was the key motivator for many respondents’ actions. For instance, about 91 per cent said they turn off electrical appliances when they are not in use because of cost savings, while 54 per cent said they do so to protect the environment.

Although 74 per cent of respondents were willing to pay more to support green products, most of them — about 42 per cent — were only willing to pay 1 to 10 per cent more, while 26 per cent were not willing to pay more at all.

The NCCS survey polled 1,000 Singapore residents aged 15 and above from September to October last year through face-to-face interviews to find out their knowledge and attitudes about climate change, as well as their practices.

The NCCS hopes to create more public awareness on climate issues and encourage the public to do their part, for example, by sharing ideas on how to tackle climate change on its Climate Change SG Facebook page and participating in its National Climate Change Competition.