The August 2021 Ipsos MORI issues Index reveals spontaneous public concern about the environment has jumped sixteen percentage points since July. Thirty-two per cent mention climate change and pollution as a major issue for Britain, making it the second-biggest concern for the country. Fieldwork was conducted between 6 and 13 August, covering the launch of the Sixth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change.
This is the second highest-level of concern recorded about the environment since it was added as an option to the survey in 1988: in July 1989, when the highest temperature since 1976 was recorded at Heathrow, 35% mentioned environmental issues as a worry.
Covid-19 remains the biggest issue for Britain, however just 40% mention it as a big issue this month – down eight points from July and 35 percentage points below the highest score this year (75% in January).
The level of concern about three other issues has also fallen this month: worry about the economy has dropped by eight percentage points (36% to 28%) and there has been a seven percentage-point fall in the proportion who see the NHS and education as big issues (28% to 21% and 21% to 14% respectively).