Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Eco-nonsense Award?

In one of those 'quirky surveys to get us some free press coverage', property search website PrimeMove found that:

"although 94 per cent of respondents believe it is important to adopt energy efficient methods, 65 per cent mainly do so to save money. This was deemed a higher priority than saving the planet and reducing the amount of harmful emissions. This follows recent research from financial advice site The Motley Fool, which also concluded that while most consumers are willing to go green, they need to be offered tangible financial benefits."


That's not "going green", that's saving a bit of cash. The whole idea of eco-living is to improve our quality of life while living within ecological limits, not sticking some extra insulation in and ending up with enough spare wonga for another flight to Marbella. The only conclusion you can make from these two pieces of 'research' are that people aren't willing to go green.

This kind of lazy nonsensical rubbish really gets my goat and it gets churned out on a daily basis. Is there an award yet for the best bit of "eco-BS"? I think we need one to heartily embarrass greenwash, rubbish research and journalists who say that SUVs aren't an ecological nightmare 'cos not enough of us drive them (you know who you are). If there isn't one then, in a Kids from Fame stylee, let's start one right here!

Nominations, pur-lease!



At 12:45 PM, Blogger Paul said...

Hi Griff, congratulations on the new arrival!! Keep checking the blog, its very interesting to read. Just a comment really, when I went to India I found there was a massive uptake of energy efficient light bulbs there. The logic being that because electricity is expensive (diesel generators most of the time) then you can save money switching. I guess these people are going to just save the money, not get an extra cheap flight somewhere.


At 5:40 PM, Blogger Gareth Kane said...

Fair 'nuff - I'm just railing at the rubbish that gets put out in the West.

I'm thinking of calling the awards 'the Green Lemons' and have categories like:

- Most inventive greenwash
- Most dubious green hero
- Politician with best hot air/action ratio

At 3:24 PM, Blogger The Lazy Environmentalist said...

Hi Gareth,

I thought I'd just pop over from my blog ( and have a good mooch around your site, which looks full of great juicy issues for me to explore.

I wonder whether this continual focus on financial savings is a bit of a red herring. After all, I switched my energy supply to a 100% renewable energy tariff not out of a motivation to save my pennies but because of my strongly held belief that I do not want to support a dirty industry. I want to put my money to a company that I believe is supporting renewable energy 100%, not one with a token 'green tariff'.

Thus, it was my ethics not my finances that determined that decision. To promote eco-initiatives as being the financially prudent route seems to dilute the message. I wonder whether this is due to a lack of confidence in the fact that 'environmental benefit' is a good enough reason.

The Lazy Environmentalist

At 11:09 AM, Blogger green_dudes said...

I must agree, that if money saved on electricity or heat are used for something like buying a bigger car or a flight it did not do any good to the environment (rebound effect).
But telling people that if they go green they will save money will have a bigger effect on wider group of people.

This means more energy savings bulbs sold, more solar panels and wind turbines sold which means they will become cheaper and affordable to more people.

The problem is this Rebound effect and we need to do something with that. receive $19,000 to improve your ecological living

At 3:26 PM, Anonymous Vic said...

Think this might qualify for an Eco-nonsense award!

Also (off topic) was interested in this (from a comedian). It added to my feeling that perhaps the green lobby (I include myself in a "lobbying friends and family" kind of way) doesn't emphasise the running out of oil side of things enough.

To me, the fact we're using 1 million years worth of oil every year , is more tangible and easier to understand than climate change. Of course, almost everything we do relies on oil, which is why we need to switch to renewable alternatives. THe upside being less oil (and other fossil fuels) less carbon!


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