Focus on climate protection remains despite pandemic

3 June 2020
North Germans anxious about climate change amid corona

More than 84 per cent of the north German population is concerned about climate change, according to a study by CC4E at HAW Hamburg. However,  scepticism about political action persists. Around two-thirds of those surveyed noted a lack of determination among politicians to achieve a positive energy transition.

IPSOS study confirms importance of climate protection 

Environmental issues and climate protection top the agenda for people in northern Germany, according to a study on the NEW 4.0 - North German energy transition carried out with the IPSOS market research institute in late 2019. A total of 1,000 people were interviewed in Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein. Climate protection remains important to the entire German population amid the ongoing corona crisis, another study by IPSOS, published in April 2020, has found. More than two thirds of respondents said that climate change is as serious a crisis in the long term as the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Combining economic support with climate protection

"The results of both studies show that the topic of climate change has not receded in the minds of the population despite the current corona crisis," said Prof. Dr. Werner Beba, co-ordinator of NEW 4.0 and head of the Competence Center for Renewable Energies & Energy Efficiency (CC4E) at HAW Hamburg. "We also see this as a challenge not to let up in our projects for effective climate protection and the feasibility of the energy transition. The present need to support business should be combined with investment incentives for effective climate protection."

Scepticism about goals of energy transition

However, the study on the acceptance of NEW 4.0 also revealed growing scepticism about achieving the goals of the energy transition. Around 65 per cent of those surveyed expressed dissatisfaction with the credibility of the political objectives, 60 per cent criticized the lack of speed and 55 per cent were dissatisfied with the commitment shown by politicians.

Solidarity needed for climate 

"Our survey shows that climate protection is important for people, but many people are very dissatisfied with current political actions," said Beba. "More and more companies and citizens are calling for a more determined approach to climate protection. The great political and social solidarity that unites us in dealing with the corona crisis is also needed for climate protection and energy transition."

Sources and further information


The Competence Center for Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency (Competence Center für Erneuerbare Energien und EnergieEffizienz or CC4E) is a cross-faculty institution at HAW Hamburg that addresses the challenges of the energy transition in an interdisciplinary manner. CC4E makes a sustainable contribution to effective climate and environmental protection. Emphasis is on making the changes in the future energy supply transparent and boosting the transition through CC4E's projects. The infrastructure and know-how also leads to an application-orientated transfer of knowledge on technological, energy policy and economic issues in teaching at HAW. The core skills are in wind energy, storage, system integration, sector coupling, environment and acceptance as well as innovation management.

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