Media Releases | 23rd Feb, 2017

8 out of 10 Victorians support renewable energy target, poll finds

More than 90 percent of Victorians also believe the state government should be acting on climate change.

New polling shows that the vast majority of Victorians are concerned about climate change and they expect state and federal government leadership to cut pollution and support renewable energy, Environment Victoria said today.

The polling was commissioned by state government agency Sustainability Victoria and undertaken by Wallis Research, who conducted a survey of 3300 Victorians.

The poll has been released as the Victorian Legislative Council is set to vote on the Climate Change Bill in Parliament today, which could usher in a new era of comprehensive planning for the threat posed by global warming.

Key findings from the poll include:

  • Over three-quarters of Victorians believe that climate change is an urgent issue that needs action now
  • 84% of Victorians support the Victorian Renewable Energy Target (which has been opposed by the Victorian Coalition)
  • Four out of five Victorians support the Andrews government target of net zero emissions by 2050, which is to be voted on in Parliament today (and which has also been opposed by the Victorian Coalition)
  • 93% believe the state government should be acting on climate change (with 48% saying the state government should be leading, and 44% saying the state government should be contributing)
  • Four out of five Victorians agree that increases in extreme weather in Victoria are being driven by global warming.

Environment Victoria CEO Mark Wakeham today said:

“This polling confirms that the vast majority of Victorians understand climate change is serious and urgent. We can already see climate change unfolding with damaging impacts across the state. Victorians expect their leaders to have a plan to tackle this massive threat to our way of life.

“The Andrews government’s Climate Change Bill, if passed today, and the upcoming Victorian Renewable Energy Target, are significant reforms that will reduce Victoria’s greenhouse pollution and help us prepare for the impacts of global warming. These are exactly the sort of leadership actions that this poll finds Victorians support.

“The poll raises serious questions about the wisdom of the Victorian Coalition’s opposition to the Climate Change Act and Victorian Renewable Energy Target. Not only is Matthew Guy’s position on these pieces of legislation irresponsible and reckless, it’s also politically unpopular and out of step with Victorian attitudes.

“Only a tiny minority of Victorians oppose reducing pollution in our economy – unfortunately many of them seem to reside in the Liberal party room.

“Given the overwhelming support for state government leadership on climate change, Environment Victoria calls on all parties in the Legislative Council to support the Climate Change Bill today. We have a golden opportunity to put Victoria on the path to a pollution-free economy – let’s take that opportunity today.”

A summary of the research is available on the Sustainability Victoria website.

For interview and further comment:

Mark Wakeham, Environment Victoria CEO
Office: (03) 9341 8127 Mobile: 0439 700 501