Two thirds of Brits want to tackle climate change - but admit they are confused how to make a real difference.

A study of 4,000 adults discovered just over half believed recycling would help the environment. And even less, 49 per cent, think that removing single use plastics could impact our green future.

The government have set 51 per cent reduction in our carbon emissions by 2025 and a 57 per cent reduction by 2030, relative to 1990 levels.

These targets were originally designed to help the UK bring down its emissions by 80 per cent by 2050.

But former prime minister Theresa May vowed that Great Britain will be carbon neutral by 2050 - though some campaigners want quicker progress.

Experts believe that if every household took action on energy efficiency - such as installing a smart meter - the UK could achieve 11 per cent of its ambitious target.

And yet just three in ten think being energy efficient would have the biggest impact on protecting the environment.

"There are 29 million existing homes in the UK and the government plans to build 1.5 million more by 2022," said University of Salford's Professor William Swan and Dr Richard Fitton.

"Yet our homes contribute massively to our carbon emissions as a country – in 2017, for example, they directly emitted 64 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

"Our research is about showing how it’s possible for ordinary people to make significant changes to the climate, by taking small steps in their homes such as installing a smart meter.

"There is an absence of energy efficiency in the debate on climate change, despite the impact it could make on the UK achieving its 2050 carbon reduction target."

Environmental campaigner Chris Packham wants energy efficiency to be a key part of the debate on climate change, with research by Smart Energy GB, the University of Salford, the Energy Saving Trust revealing a worrying lack of awareness. As part of this campaign, he is encouraging everyone to get a smart meter installed.

A mere 0.12% of 3.2 million Twitter posts about climate change included any reference to energy efficiency, while just 2.6% of media coverage mentions its importance.

And with the prospect of a general election looming, environmental issues are ninth in the list of people's list of the biggest issues facing the country - with Brexit, healthcare and education likely to dominate the debate.
"Climate change is hurting a lot of people, hard, all around the world. If we as a species are as adaptable, intelligent and resourceful as we think we are, we should be dealing with prevention not cure," Packham told Country Living.

"If we don't meet carbon zero or anything close to it, we face, as a species, a very uncomfortable time over the next 50 to 60 years. We can do something we can all do in the relative dry and warm comfort of our own homes – smart meters."