New survey to gauge over 55s' attitudes to the environment
Posted on 1 February 2012
An international survey of the attitudes of the over 55s to the environment is being launched by a consortium of older people’s organisations, led by the Stockholm Environment Institute at the University of York and Simon Fraser University’s Gerontology Research Centre (Canada).
The EnviroSurvey55 will provide a snap
shot of current attitudes of older people to environmental issues, such as
climate change, in an age of austerity and rising environmental scepticism. It
aims to identify difficulties that people over age 55 face in personally taking
action to reduce their environment footprint.
The results of the survey will feed into the policy process and help develop better strategies that address the environmental concerns of an ageing population
Dr Gary Haq
Dr Gary Haq, Senior Researcher at the
Stockholm Environment Institute, said: “The survey will provide insight into
the level of understanding and concern about environmental issues in this
demographic group, including differences that are linked to geography and
location. The results of the survey will feed into the policy process and help
develop better strategies that address the environmental concerns of an ageing
Other consortium partners include, Age UK, Community Service Volunteers’ Retired and Senior Volunteer Programme (RSVP), Help Age International and the Council On The Ageing (COTA) – Victoria (Australia).
Gloria Gutman, Research Associate at Simon Fraser University’s Gerontology
Research Centre said: “Evidence shows that older people can be
disproportionately affected by environmental problems such as air pollution,
climate change-related heat waves and other natural disasters. It’s important
that seniors around the world make their voices heard so that steps will be
taken to better prepare them and to meet their needs when they can’t always do
EnviroSurvey55 builds on previous studies of older people and the environment, in particular the vulnerability of this demographic group to the effects of a
changing climate and the need for new approaches which are sensitive to
personal circumstances in later life.
comes at a time when the environment will again be in the international
spotlight as world leaders gather in Rio de Janeiro for the United Nations
Conference for Environment and Development “Earth Summit” in June 2012.
The online survey will be conducted
from the 1 February – 31 March 2012, and anyone over the
age of 55 can complete it by visiting www.envirosurvey55.com.
Notes to editors:
Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) is a global science
policy research institute headquartered in Stockholm and with its UK office
based in the Environment Department at the University of York. Its mission is
to bridge the gap between science and policy to achieve change for a
about the University of York’s Environment Department can be found on www.york.ac.uk/environment/
has produced the following reports on older people and environment: Greening the Greys: Over 50s and
Growing Old in a Changing Climate, Older People and Environment: The Case
for Better Engagement.
Gerontology Research Centre at Simon Fraser University
recently hosted a conference on the interface of population ageing and climate
change, two of the biggest challenges facing the world today. Proceedings are
available at www.sfu.ca/fc2011.
- Help Age International is a global network of
organisations helping older people claim their rights, challenge discrimination
and overcome poverty, so that they can lead dignified, secure, active and
healthy lives. Age UK provides core funding to HelpAge International.
is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to
improving later life. They provide free information, advice and support to over
five million people; commercial products and services to over one million
customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in
- The voice of Victoria’s seniors, COTA Victoria is the
representative body of older individuals and organisations representing
seniors. COTA is a non-profit organisation committed to human rights, social
justice and the eradication of ageism. Their mission is to mobilise older
people and those who work with them, to age well in a just society.
- RSVP encourages volunteering in the over 50's
within the UK and is part of Community Service Volunteers (CSV), a company
limited by guarantee and a registered charity.