The Challenges of Environmental Safety in Russian Public Opinion
// National Security. – 2022. – № 6.
– P. 135-144.
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Abstract: The results of sociological surveys conducted within the framework of the International Social Research Program are analyzed. The aim of the work is to identify the peculiarities of Russians' perception of environmental security challenges, in comparison with the perceptions of residents of other states. Environmental safety is considered as an integral part of national security. The important role of sociological surveys as a tool for providing feedback to the population is noted. The views of Russians about the importance of the problem of the state of the environment are considered. The method of collecting primary sociological information is a formalized face–to-face interview conducted at the respondents' place of residence. A multi-stage random sample represents the adult population of the country. It is stated that environmental issues are not among the most acute and urgent problems for the population. In Russia, problems related to economic and physical security come to the fore. At the same time, the reflection of the urgency of the problem in the public consciousness is dissonant with the data of objective environmental control. The existence of a strong connection between the level of economic development of the country and the importance of the environmental problem for the population is revealed. It is concluded that the differences in assessments are largely related to the transformations of value attitudes, the transition from survival values to self-expression values, egocentric and humanistic perception of threats. It is noted that in the mass consciousness of Russians, challenges and threats that directly affect the population, related to the current state of the environment, are being actualized. Among the most serious challenges to environmental safety, residents of the country most often mention air pollution, household waste disposal and water pollution. At the same time, the potential environmental threat fades into the background. Climate change is much less often considered by Russians as the main challenge to environmental security. It is stated that the differences in the perception of challenges are largely due to the relatively low level of ecological culture of the country's population.
Keywords: environmental pollution, global climate change, environment, ecological culture, ecological threats, ecological challenges, national security, environmental security, air pollution, water pollution
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