WIT Press

Is It Really Happening Here? A Study Of Climate Change Perception In The Azores


Free (open access)





Page Range

113 - 120




280 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


R. T. Cunha, B. Rangel, O. Vieira & I. E. Rego


In EC countries, energy production and transport are responsible for the major production of GHG emissions. The last report of IPCC on climate change and water suggests that changes in lifestyle, behavior patterns and management practices can contribute to climate change mitigation across all sectors. The present study aims at understanding how Azoreans perceive climate change as well as their responsibility in both the production and the reduction of GHG emissions through a survey conducted in the island of São Miguel. A questionnaire was used to capture people’s conceptions, affect, sense of trust, and responsibility regarding climate change and the results were analyzed according to environmental and socio-demographic variables. The findings indicate that even though participants report being most concerned with poverty and food and water shortage in the world, they are afraid of Global Climate Change (GCC). Their perceptions indicate that the vast majority (1) has a very good understanding of GCC processes; (2) believe GCC is a serious threat very much linked to human activities, affects most other distant parts of the world and dangerous impacts are already happening; and (3) think they are reasonably well informed, get information mainly through the media and trust the media more than any other source of environmental information. Most participants report having taken action to fight GCC but that tendency is not expressed in daily domestic behavior. Responsibility for acting against GCC is mainly attributed to external powerful agents rather than to citizens and their communities. Keywords: perceptions, climate change, mitigation, islands, Azores, Portugal.


perceptions, climate change, mitigation, islands, Azores, Portugal