The study, by agtech startup Varda, surveyed 1,000 UK consumers, and revealed that 57% don't have an in-depth understanding of what COP is, while close to two thirds are not aware of – or don't recall – the theme of COP27, which took place in Egypt last year.
In addition, 69% of respondents said that they believe the event is 'more about political posturing' than the fight against climate change, while half believe that the UK government 'isn't committed' to the objectives of the annual meeting.
At the same time, however, close to half of respondents (48%) believe that COP28 is a 'step in the right direction' in terms of addressing climate change, while a similar percentage (47%) would like to see more comprehensive media coverage and campaigns to promote awareness of the event.
“It’s clear that there is skepticism regarding the effectiveness of COP," commented Davide Ceper, CEO at Varda. "However, it’s heartening to see that many still view it as a vital platform for instigating change.
"At Varda, we are steadfast in our belief that collaboration is key to safeguarding our collective future, and this collaboration needs to encompass everyone; from the political establishment to the corporate world, from activists to NGO to common citizens. While the aspiration is clearly present in all sectors, the conviction, according to survey respondents, seems lacking. This underscores the pressing need for more education and involvement of all communities in the concerted efforts to address this global issue."
Elsewhere, 25% percent of respondents advocate for mandatory transparency reports on decision-making processes, while 21% support the imposition of binding legal consequences for failing to meet established targets or commitments, citing these measures as crucial for enhancing overall accountability.
COP28 runs from November 30 until December 12, 2023, in Dubai.