Friday, February 29, 2008

Saying is not the same as doing

Saying you are going to do something, anything to make the world a better place is not the same as actually doing it. I hate to point out the obvious and for all of you who believe we are doing something what you are about to read will depress. If your glass was half full then it has suddenly emptied. Galaxy Research has found nine out of ten of us feel that our environmental impact is bigger than it should be with more than a quarter of households admitting they would be embarrassed of their result. Quite who they would share that information with, and how they would quantify it, is beyond me, but there you go.

Six out of ten people said they could use less petrol, electricity, gas or water and buying products that have been made abroad and shipped Down Under, rather than say locally-made goods that could be said to have travelled a shorter distance and so racked up fewer air miles and emitted fewer greenhouse gases. More than half said that they could recycle more or buy products with less packaging.

So far so good. We have looked in the mirror, not liked what we have seen and decided that we should change for the better.

But then when we are asked to actually asked to change, and pay for it, a very different picture emerges. Three quarters of us will always consider performance over environmental credentials; in other words it doesn't matter if that product promises to save the earth, if it doesn't clean the sink like my other one, it ain't going to get a look in. Women are worse than men on this score.
But price is the decider. We just can't resist products that are screaming out to be bought because the price is low, low, low and is so JUST FOR TODAY!!!! A whopping 83% put price first when considering purchasing a product, much further ahead than other considerations such as whether the packaging is recyclable (54%), the amount of packaging itself (65%) or the environmental impacts of the product's formulation (53%). We are habitual animals, after years of shopping based on price we are going to have to re-learn the true value of things.

1 comment:

Sonya said...

It is rather frightening, but considering how long campaigning for people to be active and eat healthier has been going on. And how that has had such a positive impact (not!) on the obesity levels in Australia...Mere campaigning isn't enough.

For more and more Australians their own health isn't being valued so why would they consider the health of our planet?

I have read the book and think its great by the way. Am trying to do my bit and although it isn't much yet. Its a start.