Skip to main content
Perception Gaps

Poll reveals MP misperceptions over onshore wind

03 May 2019

The Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) have published a survey showing MPs overestimate public opposition to onshore wind power. They report:

Just 8% of Members of Parliament know that onshore wind farms are now the cheapest way to add electricity generating capacity in the UK. For comparison, 12% believe that large nuclear power stations, like Hinkley Point C, provide the cheapest new capacity.

The poll also shows that MPs consistently overestimate opposition to onshore wind. The most recent Government survey shows that just 2% of the population strongly opposes the technology – but only 9% of MPs think that the figure is less than 5%. Over half of MPs (52%) believe the level of strong opposition to be above 20%.

Reference article:

The latest from the Perception Gaps timeline:

From the Climate Community 22nd February 2024

Video: People want climate action so why don’t politicians get it?

Climate Barometer’s Adam Corner created a short video talking about perception gaps, in collaboration with ‘Need to Know UK and VideoRev. 

Opinion Insight 12th February 2024

Global study shows climate perception gaps are prevalent around the world

A new survey of nearly 130,000 people across 125 countries has found that there is widespread support for climate action around the world. But, people often don’t realise how much support there is.

The open access article, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, presents new, large-scale evidence of a global mandate for climate action, while shining a light on the pervasiveness of climate ‘perception gaps’. The headline findings across the global dataset show that:

  • 89% demand intensified political action.
  • 86% endorse the pro-climate ‘social norm’ that people in their country should try to fight global warming. 
  • Strikingly, 69% of the global population expresses a willingness to contribute 1% of their personal income. 

However, this ‘actual’ support for climate action was at a mismatch with what people ‘perceived’ the levels of support to be. Around the world, people “systematically underestimate the willingness of their fellow citizens to act”.

And these discrepancies matter. If we don’t believe there’s a mandate for green policies, inertia slows the pace of the green transition. ‘Perception gaps’ like these have consequences.

  • Source: Nature
  • Authors: Peter Andre, Teodora Boneva, Felix Chopra & Armin Falk
  • Date: 9th February 2024
View Perception Gaps timeline now

Add Feedback