Muscat: More than 90 per cent of millennials in Oman and other GCC countries are increasingly concerned about the effects of global warming on the climate and its damaging impact in the future, a recent YouGov study says.
According to the study, global warming is seen as a problem for almost all respondents (92 per cent), who also think that the environment is under a bigger threat today than 20 years ago.
“Even with the majority of respondents sharing the opinion that global warming is an important issue and 64 per cent believing a solution can be found, fighting against global warming is not the first future priority for many with just six per cent considering it a top priority and only 20 per cent regarding the fight against global warming as one of their top three priorities for the future,” the study added.
In the study YouGov invited millennials aged from 18 to 29 residing in Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, to voice their opinions on climate change.
The aim of the study was to better understand how they perceive the connection between the climate and the job market, and above all to better identify their expectations regarding the stakeholders who are shaping today’s world, which they will inherit tomorrow.
Muneer Thazhe Purayil, an English teacher at an Omani school, said that young Omanis are keen in keeping the environment clean and work for a greener world.
“I often take children to clean up beaches and to carry out other environmental activities. They never say no. I am impressed with their attitude,” the teacher said.
“My focus is to spread environment awareness and best practices among the young generation. We continue to do Go Green initiatives. Our aim is to create an environment awareness in the minds of the new generation and create some environmentalists,” he added.
YouGov’s Managing Director Kailash Nagdev said that the young are leading the way by making cautious choices in terms of career paths and companies they work for, that could help them work on some of these solutions.
“It is encouraging to see that 9 out 10 millennials in the GCC are concerned about the environment and they remain cautiously optimistic that solutions could still be found to counter the issues,” Nagdev said.
Seventy seven per cent of respondents believe that a commitment to green growth and the implementation of measures to reduce greenhouse gases will improve the economic and job situation in the GCC, with 81 per cent agreeing that it is possible to combine material progress and environmental protection.
More than half of respondents, 52 per cent, believe that their education has prepared them sufficiently to face tomorrow's challenges, particularly challenges concerning global warming.
Eight in 10 believe that global warming will change the nature of existing jobs with new skills, new partnerships, and 64 per cent believe that global warming will destroy existing jobs.
Meanwhile, 56 per cent of respondents indicated that contributing to the fight against global warming is one of their career goals and a factor in their choice of job or profession.
Wage level is the most important criteria when considering an employment opportunity for only 24 per cent, however the employer's commitment to the protection of the environment and fight against global warming is the most important criteria for only seven per cent of respondents.
When it comes to who exactly young people of the GCC trust to help solve the global warming problem 87 per cent trust scientists and experts, 82 per cent trust schools and universities, 77 per cent trust NGOs and other charitable/humanitarian organizations and 74 per cent trust their government to protect the environment.
Conversely only 50 per cent of respondents trust businesses to step up and help in protecting the environment.