According to the Shelton Group, a Knoxville, Tennessee-based organization that promotes “sustainable capitalism,” its third Green Living Pulse™ study reveals what some Americans find to be embarrassing and what would encourage citizens to adopt eco-friendly behaviors.
The poll surveyed 1,105 Americans to see how embarrassed they would be given various scenarios. According to the results of the poll, 59% of people would be embarrassed if someone found out they had thrown trash out of their car window; 57% of those surveyed said they would be embarrassed if someone found out that they cheated on their taxes. Although only a 2% difference, the study reveals a growing trend towards adopting environmentalism as a cultural ideal.
Almost 1 in 5 of those surveyed also said that they would be embarrassed if someone found out that they do not recycle plastic bottles (18%), use paper plates and paper towels instead of reusable products (18%), kept their thermometer set to 73 degrees year-round (18%), and let the water run while brushing their teeth (17%).
The survey also sought to understand what it would take to encourage Americans to adopt eco-friendly behaviors in their lives. Almost half of those surveyed said a fine would encourage them to adopt eco-friendly behaviors (48%), yet 45% said that they would want a monetary reward or incentive to adopt eco-friendly behaviors in their lives.
Many surveyed stated that a form of education would encourage them to adopt eco-friendly behaviors. 44% said learning about the dangers and risk of certain behaviors would change their lifestyle choices, and 38% said learning about the benefits of eco-friendly behaviors could help them change their ways. Others said that encouragement from others would be the best source of influence to adopt eco-friendly behaviors.
The Shelton Group’s study signifies a cultural shift that holds people accountable for their own actions. As Shelton of the Shelton Group said, “This signals that sustainability is becoming a true habit for many consumers and a critical part of their self-image.”
As environmentalism is promoted to the public and adopted in marketing campaigns, a sustainable future is liklier when citizens adopt eco-friendly behaviors and change their purchasing habits to reflect their environmentally-conscious attitude.
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