Poll shows Australians want fossil fuel companies to pay for warming impacts

As Australians face sea level rise, extreme weather and increasing heatwaves polling shows most want adaptation costs to be footed by fossil fuel companies, not ratepayers.

The polling also found two third (67%) of Australians (east coast states) believe state and federal governments are not doing enough to prepare for the impacts of global warming. Less than one in five (18%) believe they are doing enough.

[Polling brief see PDF below]

“56% of Australians polled believe global warming will lead to regional conflict and national security risks,” Deputy Director of The Australia Institute, Ebony Bennett said.

“Half of respondents believe fossil fuel producers (i.e. coal, oil and gas companies) should bear the cost of these impacts.”

“Only 7% of respondents thought those bearing the brunt of these impacts should pay the costs, and only 13% believe it should be borne by taxpayers.

Respondents also overwhelmingly agreed that global warming is causing or will cause a range of serious impacts including:

  • Food and water insecurity (76%)
  • Increased extreme weather (80%)
  • Increased heatwaves (82%)
  • Increased bushfires (78%)

“The costs will be enormous, and someone is going to have to pay. If those causing it don’t pay, the rest of us will one way or another” Ms Bennett said.

Full report