UP Election 2022: People Want Parties To Focus On Climate Change, Air Pollution, Reveals Survey

According to a recent survey conducted in six cities across the poll-bound state, climate-related concerns are emerging as issues that could impact the voters’ electoral choice 
UP Election 2022: People Want Parties To Focus On Climate Change, Air Pollution, Reveals Survey

As political parties battle it out to win over India’s most populous state on the wave of religion and caste, an interesting trend seems to be quietly surfacing on the fringes. Climate change has made its way to the list of issues on the basis of which voters in Uttar Pradesh will pick sides, revealed a recent survey.     

Conducted jointly by Climate Trends, a Delhi-based environment advocacy group, and YouGov, a London-based data analytics firm, the survey found that 87 per cent of the total 1,215 respondents felt that action on climate change will impact their vote. Uttar Pradesh goes to polls from February 10.  

The survey covered six cities – Meerut, Agra, Lucknow, Kanpur, Gorakhpur and Varanasi – and gauged the voters’ attitude towards green issues ahead of the upcoming state elections. The respondents, half of them being women, were also asked questions about air quality, air pollution and action on climate change in their cities. 

Nearly 80 per cent of the respondents, a major chunk of them belonging to the 25-44 age group, were aware of the fact that 10 out of the 15 most polluted cities in the country are in UP. While 47 per cent felt that the air quality in their city was not good, more than 60 per cent attributed pollution within city limits to vehicles, construction and industries. Around 76 per cent of the total respondents agreed that air pollution affected their health and should be addressed by political parties in the elections.

In terms of its impact, 57 per cent felt that climate change can lead to economic losses while 38 per cent were not so sure. 

When asked about what kind of actions the government needs to take to deal with pollution in the state, 64 per cent pointed towards planting more trees. Interestingly, 60 per cent felt that more investment in the EV infrastructure will help and that more subsidies will encourage people to buy electric vehicles which will, in turn, help bring down air pollution.

About 58 per cent said that the solution lies in decreasing dependence on thermal power plants and sourcing cleaner power. In all, 87 per cent of the respondents agreed that UP needed a green transformation with solar-powered buildings, electric buses and clean air.

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