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Over the past decade, public opinion about cli­mate change has become increas­ingly well doc­u­mented. Awareness about cli­mate change is very high, and a number of sur­veys have shown that the British, European and North American member of the public express sub­stan­tial con­cern about it.

For example, a Eurobarometer survey in 2007 found that around 90% of British cit­izens were con­cerned about cli­mate change (Eurobarometer, 2007). However, cli­mate change con­tinues to be a low pri­ority issue for most people when con­trasted with other soci­etal issues such as the eco­nomy, edu­ca­tion, or the threat of ter­rorism (Upham et al., 2009), and in recent years the level of reported con­cern about cli­mate change has fallen some­what, accom­panied by an increase in the number of people expressing uncer­tainty about the reality of human influ­ence on the cli­mate (BBC, 2010; Leiserowitz et al., 2010; Pew Research Centre, 2009; Whitmarsh, 2011).

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