Public support for Australia to be a world leader in climate change solutions has rebounded to its highest since the major political parties agreed on emissions trading, research shows.
About 65% of the nation want to see Australia lead the world in solutions, an increase from 52% in 2010-12 when the “carbon tax” debate was front and centre in politics.
The annual attitudinal study by the Climate Institute shows this year’s jump, up from 59% in 2014-15.
It’s the closest it has been to the 76% support in 2007 when then prime minister John Howard announced an emissions trading scheme.
The institute chief executive, John Connor, said the results show support is recovering from the carbon tax scare campaign.
The study also found 77% of Australians believe climate change is happening, up from 64% four years ago and 70% last year.
Three-quarters of Australians believe governments should plan for the orderly closure of coal plants and replace them with clean energy.
Just 3% say coal is their preferred energy source for Australia.
And 77% believe state governments should bring in incentives for more renewable energy.
The study also found people want climate policy to be bipartisan, with 90% believing the responsibility for action rests with the federal government.