According to a survey of 1500 people conducted by Yahoo, 77 percent of consumers believed themselves to be “green” and 57 percent stated they made a green purchase decision in the past six months.
Around 23 percent of consumers were classified by Yahoo as “deeply committed” greenies and about 24 percent of those surveyed found green to be “trendy”, particularly those in the younger age brackets.
The car industry should take note of this – 71 percent said they are interested in buying an “environmentally sound” car in the future.
While I don’t want to rain on the green parade and certainly not take a greener than thou approach, a couple of things to point out.
a) Those surveyed were in the Los Angeles, Chicago and Portland, Oregon area. While I don’t know much about the first two cities, I do know that Portland is about as green as they come; certainly not your “average” citizens.
b) Buying a green product doesn’t make you green. For example, if I drink fair trade/organic coffee today.. but smoke a pack of cigarettes, I think the latter sort of negates much of the coffee effort – straining out the gnat while gulping down the camel as the old saying goes. There may be a small reduction in environmental impact, which is better than none, but the big issue is being ignored. This is why I refer to myself as “a bit of a greenie” to those who wish to classify me.
Having said that, the fact that so many people are happy and willing to identify as “green” is great. It’s fertile soil. They are aware, it’s on their radar and it’s important to them.
These people will tell others. They will (as I have and continued to) learn that leading an environmentally friendly lifestyle isn’t just about purchase decisions, but the amount you purchase and what you do with it. It can be a slow process and sometimes it needs to be so that people aren’t overwhelmed and scared off.
It’s all good… it’s just that we don’t have a lot of time.