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Greening Household Behaviour

Greening Household Behaviour is the title of the latest OECD (Organisation for Economic and Co-operative Development) publication that presents the main results and policy implications following the survey of more than 10,000 households in 10 OECD countries. Interestingly the US and Britain were not included in the survey for comparison.OECD Greening Household Behaviour Pulbication Cover

The good news for Australia out of the survey is that individuals and households rank among the most concerned in the world about a range of environmental issues from waste generation to climate change.

The bad news is that Australians either think they cannot make a difference as individuals or are simply not prepared to change. Australians are:

  • The second highest users of water in the home
  • Among the least satisfied nations with available drinking water from the tap
  • The second highest country (to Italy) with number of cars (2.6 cars per family) and the highest country in the use of vehicles to go shopping
  • The least likely to recycle plastics, paper or glass despite having some of the best recycling services in the world.

Five percent of Australians believe that their individual actions do not make a difference – higher than in any other country surveyed. So while Australians might rate themselves highly as being environmentally aware, that doesn’t necessarily translate to actions.

So the message Australians should take from this publication is that they should convert their concern into action - and make a difference!

The countries surveyed were: Australia, Canada, the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden. A copy of the publication can be downloaded here.

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