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The Biggest Environmental Worries of Every Age Group

New research has revealed that what each group is worried about will affect them the most due to climate change.

The study by straw specialist Drinking Straw analysed a recent ONS Opinions and Lifestyle Survey, which asked the UK public their thoughts about the impact of climate change by 2030, and what effects would affect them directly.

It found that all age groups, from as young as 16 to people over 70, were worried about rising UK temperatures, with 62% of respondents to the survey saying it would affect them by 2030. 54% said they would be affected by reduced access to safe and 48% said they would be affected by extreme weather events. Additionally, only 31% of people said they would be affected by rising sea levels. 14% of total respondents to the survey also said they wouldn’t be affected by any of the issues shown.

Those aged 16 to 29 had the strongest say on being affected by climate change by 2030, with a whopping 70% saying they would be affected by rising temperatures, 51% saying they would be affected by reduced access to safe and affordable, and 50% saying they would be affected by flooding as a result of increased rainfall. 12% of respondents aged 16 to 29 said they would not be affected by any of the selections, the lowest percentage of any age group studied.

Which of the following do you think will directly affect you by 2030? All
16 to 29
30 to 49
50 to 69
70 and over
Rising UK temperatures 62 70 63 59 57
Reduced access to safe and affordable food 54 51 60 52 48
Water supply shortages 40 43 46 37 34
Rising sea-levels 31 45 32 27 21
Flooding from rainfall 40 50 44 37 27
Other extreme weather events 48 49 52 49 38
None of these 14 12 14 14 19


Regarding those aged 30 to 49, 63% said they would be affected by rising temperatures in the UK, 60% said they would be affected by reduced access to safe and affordable food, and 52% of the age group said they were concerned with extreme weather events.

There was a minor difference in results between those aged 50 to 69 and those aged 30 to 49. 59% of Brits aged 50 to 69 said rising temperatures would affect them directly, 52% said reduced access to safe and affordable food would affect them, and 49% said extreme weather events would.

Regarding those aged 70 and over, 57% of respondents said rising temperatures would affect them, with the rest of the options seeing less than half of all respondents saying they would be affected. Only 21% of those over 70 were worried about rising sea levels.

Commenting on the findings, a spokesperson from Drinking Straw said: “It’s clear from these findings that the younger generation is most concerned about what climate change might cause in the next decade. Yet, with so much uncertainty, even older people still have their worries, which shows that even when you might think global warming won’t affect you to still help out where you can.”

This study was conducted by Drinking Straw, a distributor, wholesaler, and supplier of drinking straws in all of Europe, offering flexible, eco-friendly and plastic-free wholesale stock.

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