Canadians accept reality of climate change but unsure human activity responsible: study

A significant number of Canadians do not believe human activity is the cause of climate change. (Natalie Dixon) A significant number of Canadians do not believe human activity is the cause of climate change. (Natalie Dixon)

Natalie Dixon

Sheyne Blandford, 19, a first year fitness and health promotion student at Humber College said climate change is entirely due to human activity, contrary to a recent recent survey which asserts Canadians overwhelmingly accept climate change but many doubt the role humans play in it.

The University of Montreal study shows that while 79 per cent of Canadians believe in the impact of climate change, 39 per cent do not believe climate change is due to human activity.“The science is pretty clear,” Blandford said.

Humans need to start reusing and recycling things if they want climate change to stop or at least slow down, she said.She said people want to ignore problems and so climate change will continue.

It’s hard to believe people don’t believe humans are responsible for the changes, said Stephen Connoly, 21, a fourth year geology student at Memorial University. Rather than a focus on more oil extraction, Connoly suggests putting money towards other, less environmentally harmful, things.

“It’s something that they have to solidly commit to for years and years,” he said.

Gloria Marsh, executive director for the York Region Environmental Alliance, said she cannot believe this study because everyone considers the environment a critical issue.

“Certainly it is,” she said of climate change being due to human activity.

Simple things like Styrofoam in grocery stores to hold one vegetable or take out food can contribute to the harming of the planet, she said.

The group is challenged by people that have a bad attitude towards environmental friendliness, she said. She is proud, however, that grocery chain Sobeys is switching their take-out food containers to recyclable ones, due to the Alliance’s efforts.

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