Most important environmental issues in France 2018

In April 2018, 40 percent of French declared that they thought global warming and climate change were the most important environmental issues their country was facing. As environmental questions are getting bigger and bigger in the political debate, the French population, like its European counterparts, seems to show more interest in environmental protection.

Ready to change their habits

According to the source, climate change and air pollution have been mentioned as two of the three most important environmental issues in France in 2018. On the other hand, emissions and soil erosion appear to be two problems which do not have the same impact on public opinion in France. Emissions were mentioned by 12 percent of respondents, compared to five percent for soil erosion. In a country that has the highest level of nuclear energy consumption in Europe, the population seems to be more aware of global warming. For a few years now it may be stated that the French population is trying to change its habits. Since 2010, more and more French were buying products in organic stores or bio departments in supermarkets. In 2015, there were also 52 percent stating that they systematically sort their waste in public spaces.

Policy for environment

Despite not being the European country with the strongest policy concerning environment, France is trying to make efforts. The level of carbon dioxide emissions in the country has decreased since 2000. With 234.7 million metric tons of CO2 emitted in 2017, France was the fifth country in Europe with the highest level of emissions of CO2, far behind countries like Germany or the United Kingdom. In 2016, the French government spent more than 47 billion euros in environmental protection and the share of energy from renewable sources in gross final energy consumption increased.

In your view, what are the three most important environmental issues facing France today?*

Share of respondents
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Release date

May 2018



Survey time period

March 23 to April 6, 2018

Number of respondents


Age group

16 years and older

Method of interview

Online panel

Supplementary notes

* The original question was worded by the source as follows: " In your view, what are the three most important environmental issues facing France today? That is, the top environmental issues you feel should receive the greatest attention from your local leaders?"
** Respondents from 28 countries around the world. Approximately 1,000 individuals aged between 18 and 65 years were surveyed in France.
Where results do not sum to 100 or the ‘difference’ appears to be+-1 more/less than the actual, this may be due to rounding, multiple responses or the exclusion of don't knows or not stated responses.

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