Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodians divided on climate

Cambodians divided on climate

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Water levels drop during the dry season in Kampong Thom province in February​​ 2020. Heng Chivoan

Cambodians divided on climate

Cambodians are divided on the cause of climate change but 84 per cent of people believe climate change is happening, a report released by the National Council for Sustainable Development (NCSD) revealed.

The NCSD on July 26 launched its third report on public perception on climate change in Cambodia.

This study aims to understand people’s understanding, attitude and practices in relation to climate change, environment, and availability of resources.

According to the report, 76 per cent believe that the loss of forests is the main cause of climate change, 53 per cent believe human activity is the cause, while 52 per cent say it is nature. Fifty per cent claim a damaged ozone layer is to blame, 49 per cent say population growth and 34 per cent blame migration to the city, and 22 per cent believe climate change is an act of god.

Seventy-two per cent have heard about climate change, and 33 per cent understand what climate change means. The latter group is urban dwellers, male, professional and highly educated.

The report said 91 per cent of Cambodians have responded to climate change, while 79 per cent are willing to make further changes to adapt to climate change, the environment and available resources.

Institutional support and lack of resources are major barriers for people to take action regarding climate change followed by social barriers, the report claimed.

The report added that living standards had improved by 87 per cent and incomes increased by 52 per cent.

Unfortunately, the report revealed that 28 per cent of people believed climate change cannot be solved, while 69 per cent said it could. Eighty-one per cent thought climate change will affect Cambodia in the future.

Ministry of Environment secretary of state Tin Ponlok said that research revealed three-quarters of Cambodians are aware that climate change is affecting Cambodia, and almost all have sensed that temperatures and droughts have increased in the last 10 years.

“The research found that most Cambodians are prepared take action against severe climate such as rising heat waves, storms, droughts and floods.

“Two-thirds of Cambodians interviewed said their lives had improved in the last five years,” he said.

Ponlok said linking climate change-related activities with health factors and improving family livelihoods, as well as educating people’s children, is an important key to motivating people to take more action in response to climate change.

UNDP deputy resident representative in Cambodia Sonali Dayaratne said: “This report provides an important opportunity for all stakeholders to collectively contribute to and further coordinate Cambodia’s progress towards a more climate resilient society.”

“Using the results of this important study, joint interventions can be better designed to improve Cambodia’s adaptive capacity, reduce emissions, and ultimately fulfill the stakeholders’ commitment to better the lives of people, especially the most vulnerable,” she said.

MOST VIEWED

  • WHO: Covid in Cambodia goes into new phase

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia said that Cambodia has reached a new phase of the pandemic with “decreasing case numbers, high vaccination coverage and a more transmissible circulating variant threatening a hidden surge”. In a press release on September 6, the WHO said that

  • Purging Sihanoukville’s past with a new masterplan

    Amid illicit activities, haphazard development and abandoned projects, the coastal city of Sihanouk province needs a reset to move forward. A new masterplan might be the answer to shake off its seemingly mucky image to become the Shenzhen of the south Gun toting, shootouts, police

  • 'Pursue your goals, reach out to me': Young diplomat tapped as envoy to South Korea

    Chring Botum Rangsay was a secretary of state at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation before being designated as the new Cambodian ambassador to South Korea. According to her official CV published on the foreign ministry’s website, she started her first government

  • School reopening ‘offers model for other sectors’

    World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Cambodia Li Ailan said school reopening process should be used as a role model for reopening other sectors currently mothballed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Li strongly supports the government’s decision to reopen schools, saying it is a decision

  • Tourism concerns laid bare

    To ensure the success of plans to reopen the tourism market for international visitors, Cambodia must pay utmost attention to two primary determinants – the ongoing paradigm shift in domestic tourism services towards the ‘new normal’, and the factors influencing choices of destinations among foreign holidaymakers.

  • Covid jab drive for 6-11 age group to begin Sept 17

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has permitted Covid-19 vaccinations for over 1.8 million children aged 6-11 across the country from September 17 in order for them to return to school after a long hiatus. Hun Sen also hinted that vaccinations for the 3-6 age group will follow in