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Britons are suffering from ‘global warming fatigue’, according to a new poll which shows they care less about climate change than most other nationalities. The survey of 1,000 British adults found that just 25 per cent rate man-made climate change as the most pressing environmental problem.

In contrast, half say energy security is the biggest green issue – while 48 per cent are more concerned about their rubbish collections.

Out of 24 countries polled, Britain comes in at third bottom in terms of concern about climate change, the Ipsos Mori survey found.

Americans, Australians, French and Japanese are all more bothered about global warming than Britons.

Edward Langley, Ipsos MORI’s Head of Environment Research, said: ‘The public are cautious about climate change. They feel there is a lack of consensus on whether it is man-made and the degree to which it will impact their lives.

‘In contrast, our dependency on fossil fuels is a more immediate and tangible risk that they can get their heads around, and one where they see an obvious need to take action to maintain living standards.’

Around 48 per cent of Japanese – who were surveyed after last month’s earthquake and tsunami – rated climate change as the key environmental issue.

Some 40 per cent of Canadians, 38 per cent of Germans, 30 per cent of Australians and 29 per cent of French feel the same.

Concern about man-made climate change fell after two cold winters and the failure of the UN global warming talks.

The University of East Anglia leaked email scandal – which showed climate scientists plotting to ignore freedom of information requests about their work – has also affected public opinion.

Daily Mail, 19 April 2011

see also: Benny Peiser : Climate fatigue leaves global warming in the cold