A survey has found that almost three in five Pakistanis are unaware of the term climate change with only seven per cent of those quizzed saying that it was responsible for the floods.
A surprising 17 percent of the 1,086 respondents said that the record monsoon and the devastating floods that followed were because of ‘our sins’.
The biggest reason for the floods, according to 28% of survey respondents, is poor water management, specifically the absence of dams and reservoirs. Lack of planning on the part of the government was next (25%), followed by unprecedented rains and prolonged monsoon (20%).
Ipsos, a multinational market research and consulting firm headquartered in Paris, conducted the survey with a sample size of 1,086 respondents between September 7 and 12. The drawback is that the sample size is small.
The survey result showed that nine out of ten people do not consider climate change a personal threat. That number drops to three out of four when people were asked whether climate change was a threat to the community.
Only 32 percent consider climate change a threat to their province. However, every other respondent considers it a threat to Pakistan.
Of the respondents, 69% were male and 31% were female. 42% of the respondents were from Punjab, 33% from Sindh, 21% from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 3% from Azad Jammu & Kashmir and 2% from Balochistan.
Three out of four respondents were from urban areas, while the respondents were spread across socio-economic classes. A similar method was adopted for the age group of respondents, with the graph forming a normal distribution chart and 35% of those quizzed in the 31-40 age group.
Another disconcerting trend to emerge from the survey is the perception in two out of three Pakistanis that the floods will occur next year as well.
When asked how big of a problem climate change is for Pakistan, 29% said it was serious, while the same number said it was not a problem at all. 21% respondents saw it as a minor or moderate problem.
On relief efforts, one out of two Pakistanis believe the armed forces have played the best role. The federal government is next with 34%, followed by NGOs at 13%, provincial governments at 2% and political parties at one percent.
Pakistanis are also opening their purse strings, with one out two Pakistanis somewhat or completely willing to donate to flood relief. A slightly lesser number (46%) constitutes those who are either undecided or not willing to donate.
NGOs have a slight advantage over the government, with 52% respondents saying they were the preferred recipient of their donations.
The Ipsos survey also asked respondents about the NGOs they trust, with the Edhi Foundation the organisation of choice for a quarter of the respondents.
Al Khidmat comes next with 21% respondents finding it trustworthy. Akhuwat Foundation, Saylani Trust and JDC Foundation next.