Green Consumers are ‘Mushy’, US study finds
I’ve just been reading an interesting piece on GreenBiz on a study of consumer attitudes in the US. The conclusions of the article are:
1. That green consumerism is still in a niche,
2. That attitudes are ‘mushy’ – ie that actions don’t always follow attitudes.
I thought that the first conclusion was a bit harsh – the study found that only 29% of US consumers didn’t care at all about the environmental impacts of their behaviour. Not bad, in my opinion.
But the mushiness is a real issue. The sales of A-rated energy efficient white goods may be booming, but the Energy Savings Trust estimates that sales of patio heaters are likely to double in the next year. Just after hearing this on the BBC, I got a call from a local radio station looking for my views. I usually try and give a balanced view on any environmental issue, but when it comes to patio heaters I have to be scathing. From a green point of view they are evil incarnate and I told them that straight. I suspect, like 4x4s, public opinion will start to turn against such heaters and trying to heat the atmosphere while you finish your bottle of rosé will become unfashionable again.
BTW, the best solution to living an outdoor lifestyle in a cool climate I have seen was in Copenhagen where pavement cafes provide you with a big fleecy blanket to wrap yourself in while you enjoy your Carlsberg. Fantastic.