Results strongest in years 'due to public being able to witness changing temperatures, weather'
Survey found 3pc of people supported coal power, 59pc supported solar energy
SA electricity price spike 'exposed need for climate change, energy policies'
The research showed most Australians trust the scientific evidence of climate change and believe there are job and investment opportunities in renewable energy.
Climate Institute CEO John Connor said it was vital politicians and businesses applied this information to create change immediately.
"I think this sends a very important signal to politicians and business that the Australian community now is actually solidly supporting action and have great expectations on both politicians and business that we get on with it," he said.
Mr Connor said this year's results were the strongest in eight years, due to the public being able to witness changing temperatures and weather events.
Mr Connor said Australians expected the Federal Government to join the international community in leading action on climate change.
"We're also seeing international action, US and China working together, but importantly, people are seeing and literally can touch and feel and kick the tyres of cheap and accessible clean energy, clean transport," he said.
The research also looked at preferred energy sources and found only 3 per cent of people surveyed supported coal power, while solar energy had 59 per cent of the support.
"I think we are seeing a steady rebound from the lows of 2012 and the carbon price scare campaign and support for climate change, and renewable energy in particular, is as strong as it's been since 2008," he said.
The Climate of the Nation 2016 results were based on an online Galaxy Research survey of people aged over 18 from capital cities and regional areas around Australia.
SA electricity price spike 'exposed need for policies'
The survey was done shortly after a breakdown in the South Australian system — where wind power produces 40 per cent of electricity.
On July 7, the wind did not blow, coal-fired power stations had recently been shut down and the interconnector that provides power from Victoria when needed was down for maintenance.
The wholesale electricity price soared from $60 a megawatt hour to $9,000 a MWh.
Grattan Institute energy program director Tony Wood, who researched the event, said: "South Australia saw not just the spike in electricity price, but we're actually seeing the early shutdowns of some of the plants there and that effects the communities".
Mr Wood said it exposed the urgent need for Australia to develop climate change and energy policies.
"South Australia is a great example of what happens when you forget that we're becoming part of a national system and it's got to be a real commitment to both the climate change policy that can actually work, and get bipartisan support and do a coordinated national approach," he said.
"Both will have to be done to make the transition we need.
"And in the meantime, there could even be a risk and walking into that blindfolded, is not a great idea."
Federal Environment and Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg said he was working with states to harmonise policies, but agreed the July price spike highlighted the challenges for an energy market in transition from fossil fuel to renewables.
"We are taking what happened very seriously," Mr Frydenberg said.