The United Nations recently released some results from one of its largest global surveys, MyWorld2015. Over 1.4 million people from all over the world have already responded to the survey which asks which six factors, out of 16 possibilities, would improve their lives and those of their families.
It was no surprise to me that the clear winner was Education. I was however quite surprised by the fact that “Action on Climate Change” was at the very bottom of priorities. What is it that caused climate change to rank so low in this context? Is it that climate change is such a large and abstract issue? When people are considering what would improve their own lives it is natural I suppose that they would focus on issues with a more tangible connection to their daily existence. Education, health care, food, water, job opportunities are very natural choices. Did “protecting rivers, forests and oceans” rank higher because most of us have a personal connection to these aspects of nature? Did climate change not get the votes because people have a hard time easily seeing and understanding how their existence is affected? If so how do we get the issues of climate change away from the realm of lofty academic debates and into more grounded discussions and actions that engage people around the world.
It seems to me that each of the 16 priorities listed in the survey are interconnected with each other and all are definitely connected to climate change. I am happy to know a little more about what my neighbours around the world think. I am excited by the discussions that this survey can incite. I am interested to know what we will do with this information in the coming years. What do you think?
To check it out or add your voice go to www.myworld2015.org