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  • 83% think climate policies will improve their quality of life
  • 69% say that the green transition will be a source of economic growth
  • 65% believe policies to tackle climate change will create more jobs than they eliminate
  • 25% expect to have to move to another region or country in the future because of climate change — this figure increases to 32% among people aged 20-29

These are some of the results from the latest release of the 2021-2022 Climate Survey conducted in September 2021 and published today by the European Investment Bank (EIB). The EIB is the lending arm of the European Union and the world’s largest multilateral lender for climate action projects.

Better quality of life despite less purchasing power

Are policies to tackle climate change good news for the economy? The majority of the Portuguese would agree: 69% of respondents believe the green transition will be a source of economic growth (above the EU average of 56%).

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Moreover, more than three-quarters (83%) of Portuguese respondents believe that their quality of life will improve, with a positive impact on the quality of their food and their health. Policies that address the climate emergency are also seen as good news for the job market: two-thirds of Portuguese people (65%) believe these will have a net positive impact on employment levels within the country, creating more jobs than they eliminate.

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However, a majority (58%) anticipate that their purchasing power will decrease with the green transition.

Migration to other regions and changing jobs

According to Portuguese people, the challenges related to climate change are here to stay. About two-thirds (66%) of them believe that the climate emergency will still be a serious issue by mid-century.

Portuguese respondents see climate change threatening their place of residence. When asked about the longer-term impact of the climate crisis, one-quarter of Portuguese people (25%) expect to have to move to another region or country because of climate change.

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Long-term lifestyle changes

The Portuguese are conscious of the behavioural shifts that are needed to tackle climate change. According to them, individual lifestyle changes that reduce carbon emissions will gain significant traction in the next 20 years. More than one-third of respondents (39%) think that most people will no longer own a car in 20 years and two-thirds (67%) believe that the majority of us will be working from home to contribute to the fight against climate change. Lastly, one-third (34%) think most of us will have adopted a plant-based diet and 58% predict that an energy quota will be allocated to each individual (10 points above the EU average of 48%).

A global comparison: Differences between EU, British, American and Chinese respondents 

Overall, Europeans are divided on whether the green transition will be a source of economic growth. More than half of respondents (56%) believe it will be the case, in line with the perception of Americans and British people (57%), while Chinese people are more optimistic (67%). However, the majority of Europeans (61%) are confident that their quality of life will improve, with a positive impact on the quality of their food and their health. Europeans are less pessimistic compared to Chinese people (77%), Americans (65%) and British people (63%).

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EIB Vice-President Ricardo Mourinho Félix said: “The Portuguese see clear opportunities in the green transition for their quality of life as well as for the job market. At the same time, they do feel that some significant changes to their way of life will be needed in the longer term. As the EU climate bank, it is our responsibility to work with policymakers and industry partners to address these concerns. In doing so, we can effectively contribute to the twin transition to a greener and prosperous future that leaves no one behind.”

Download the Excel spreadsheet with the raw data for all 30 countries surveyed here. Please click here to access an EIB webpage presenting key findings of the EIB Climate Survey IV.

Background information

About the EIB Climate Survey

The European Investment Bank has launched the fourth edition of the EIB Climate Survey, a thorough assessment of how people feel about climate change. Conducted in partnership with market research firm BVA, the fourth edition of the EIB Climate Survey aims to inform the broader debate on attitudes and expectations in terms of climate action. More than 30 000 respondents participated in the survey between 26 August and 22 September 2021, with a representative panel for each of the 30 countries polled.

About the European Investment Bank

The EIB Group has recently adopted its Climate Bank Roadmap to deliver on its ambitious agenda to support €1 trillion of climate action and environmental sustainability investments in the decade to 2030 and to deliver more than 50% of EIB finance for climate action and environmental sustainability by 2025. As part of the roadmap, all new EIB Group operations have been aligned with the goals and principles of the Paris Agreement since the start of 2021.

About BVA

BVA is an opinion research and consulting firm recognised as one of the most innovative market research firms in its sector. Specialised in behavioural marketing, BVA combines data science and social science to make data inspiring and bring it to life. BVA is also a member of the Worldwide Independent Network of Market Research (WIN), a global network of some of the world’s leading market research and survey players, with over 40 members.