Who are these green people? Here are my thoughts.
Types of Green Consumers
There are many different types of people in this world and personalities that match certain behaviors. Going green has also created a sub-category of types of people who are focused on making a lasting impact on society by fixing the harmful effects humans have on the earth. Irrelevant to the degree a person has gone green it is apparent that common traits do exist. The fact that the individual has made a conscious decision to implement green into their daily lives is a personal choice and one decided on by many factors.
An avid investor is always on the search for the next best thing and sustainability has turned from an idea to reality. With a focus on the homeowner investor this type of personality is looking to reduce over time the operating cost of their property. Examples include solar panels, geothermal systems, energy efficient windows… the list can go on. We consider this type an investor because it requires a long-term commitment and an initial up-front capital cost in comparison to the norm. Also, employees are increasingly environmentally conscious (Earthshare, 2014) and it is important for business to be aware. Their stance is not only with improving efficiencies and reducing the homes environmental impact—it focuses around end-of-day cost savings which are evident immediately after the home is built.
This category of personality loves the idea and process of going green. Sustainability is the centeal focus and is implemented in everything they do especially when it comes to their living environment. A great quote sums lifestyle-focused living:
If society is to successfully achieve meaningful improvements in sustainable living—while reducing greenhouse gas emissions—we need to look beyond what is being built and focus on creating different ways of living. Constructing greener buildings is only part of the solution. (Stakeholderfourm, 2014)
It is a primer for living green and has caught the attention of developers building communities that are self-sustainable and include commercial/office space in walking distance to homeowners. The idea here is have a one-stop-shop for everything limiting the everyday human impact on the earth.
Like conspiracy theorists, the skeptics are more or less arguing that going green will not change the impact on the environment. They acknowledge the cost savings approaches of going green but attest that most products are unproven and this endless energy source will not be able to meet demand.
“When it comes to the environment, consumers say the right things, and may want to do the right things but aren’t always willing to pay for it,” says Carman Allison, the Director of Shopper and Industry Insights for Nielsen in Canada. “Their priority is the sustainability of their wallet.” (Global & Mail, 2014)
They further argue that end consumers are motivated by price and the skeptics highlight shows that while 67% of Canadian consumers prefer to buy products from companies with programs that give back to society, only 33% are willing to pay extra, compared with 46% of respondents internationally (Global & Mail, 2014).
In conclusion, it is hard to determine which personality or type of person best represents the green movement. From investors to skeptic, each have their own perception of human consumption along with the harmful or not so harmful effects on the earth’s surface. Research has been two sided on the matter and the term global warming has many facets to it. It is said that half of consumers surveyed do not believe, feel misled by, or question the validity of such claims and 84% agreed that paperless bills and statements are being promoted to reduce costs (Twosides, 2014). Time will tell and we may or may not be too late but going green is no longer a trend—it is here to stay. It simply comes down to how one perceives it and acts in their day to day.
(2014). Help Stop The Go Green Go Paperless Bus. TwoSides. Retrieved fromhttp://twosidesus.wordpress.com/2013/10/02/help-stop-the-go-green-go-paperless-bus
(2014). Greening Business. Earthshare. Retrieved from http://www.earthshare.org
(2014). Green. Globe and Mail. Retrieved from http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/home-and-garden
Skanska (2014). Outeach. Sustainability. Retrieved from http://www.stakeholderforum.org