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For better climate, until the efforts are free: the European Investment Bank polls Dutch about climate change

Many Dutch people are most willing to give up flying if it contributes to a ‘better climate’, but least willing to leave the car. This is reported by the European Investment Bank (EIB) on the basis of their annual climate survey. Then stop eating meat, video streaming and buy new clothes in the top five of things the Dutch are willing to give up for climate change.

42 percent of Dutch people say they want to give up flying, compared to 10 [rtvrmy who say they want to ditch the car. This is particularly difficult for the elderly and people living in rural areas. Most people (67 percent) say they already eat less meat, yet another 19 percent say they want to give up it completely. There is little difference between men and women, except in clothing and meat eating. Women are much more inclined not to eat meat, but less inclined not to buy new clothes. With men, it’s the opposite.

Three-quarters of young people aged between 15 and 29 say they are motivated to work for a ‘better climate’. Remarkably, relatively many young people say they want to fly again when the pandemic is over. Young people find it most difficult to stop using video streaming services. Servers and networks use a lot of energy, which in turn causes greenhouse gas emissions, as long as the majority of electricity is produced from fossil fuels.

Almost three-quarters of the Dutch say they are committed to tackling the climate crisis, but only 9 percent of the Dutch actually make radical changes to their own lifestyle.

“This study shows that on the one hand there is a genuine willingness to tackle the climate crisis, but on the other hand that the radical changes people want to make are much less,” says Els Sweeney-Bindels, head of the Amsterdam EIB office.

In addition, the EIB welcomes the fact that more than one fifth of Dutch citizens want to fly less because of climate change and more than one third want to go on holiday in their own country because of reductions in emissions. “People seem to think about it. And no more flying, I’d say a radical change.”

However, the Dutch only seem willing to show climate-friendly behaviour if this does not affect their comfort or requires no extra effort. “Only 18 percent are willing to pay CO2 compensation for flying. As soon as it’s going to cost, willingness goes down,” says Sweeney-Bindels.

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