Youth study: Young people consider climate protection and education to be the biggest problems
Protecting the environment and the climate is first and foremost for the young people. This shows a study. But the industry does too little in their view.
For young people, the state of the environment and climate, education and social justice are more important than the future job. When asked which of the big current problems they are most concerned with, 78 percent of respondents in a study cited environmental and climate protection as "very important" or "more important" - about three-quarters. At 80 percent, a little more called the state of education as a problem. Most (81 percent) call the problem of social justice "very important" and "more important". Fewer young people face the problem of unemployment and economic and regional development.
The study was compiled by the Institute for Ecological Economic Research at the Technical University of Berlin. The clients are the Federal Environment Ministry and the Federal Environment Agency. The researchers interviewed more than 1,000 young people between the ages of 14 and 22 years. The results are part of the environmental awareness study, for which the Federal Office polls all age groups every two years. In some of the most recently published results in May 2019, the state of education is mentioned as the most important problem to be solved, with climate protection following in third place after social justice.
Environment Minister Svenja Schulze wants to present the study in detail on Saturday. The results announced in advance confirm from their point of view what has been happening for weeks, said Schulze. "Environmental and climate protection is very important to young people." They are ready to get involved. "This encourages the big tasks ahead of us," said the SPD politician.
Above all, young people see environmental and climate protection as the responsibility of each and every one of us. This view was 61 percent of 14-22 year olds. On the question of who could make an important contribution to environmental and climate protection in Germany, every second named the industry, almost half (48 percent) of the federal government. Cities, the media, schools, environmental organizations, investors and academia landed further behind - three entries were allowed.
The young people and young adults presented a bad testimony to environmental protection and climate protection to the economy, politics and also to the individual citizens: Only 15 percent thought that the industry was doing "enough" or "rather enough" in this area 22 percent. That "each and every one" does enough or rather enough, 21 percent find, so well one in five.
Four out of five young people in Germany have heard of the Fridays for Future movement, which calls for demonstrations on Fridays. Almost a quarter (23 percent) said they would participate in the demos during school. Of those who have not participated so far, almost one in two (46 percent) can think twice.
Fridays for Future began a year ago with the Swedish student Greta Thunberg, who demonstrated for the climate, instead of going to school. Meanwhile, it has become a worldwide movement. Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) said about the movement that she had made politics "more resolute in the matter".