Indians and Brazilians are the most environment friendly people while Americans are the most polluting, a survey by National Geographic magazine and pollsters Globalscan on consumer behaviour has revealed.
The survey of a thousand people each from 14 high-polluting nations listed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has India and Brazil tied for the top spot with 60 green index points. Americans had the lowest score with 44.9 points.
The survey, released in Washington on Wednesday, rates Indian eating habits the best, with 84 per cent eating local vegetables at least once a week. Sunita Narain of the Centre for Science and Environment said unlike the west, Indians don’t waste much and are very good at recycling. The Indian green index is high on account of low per capita energy consumption — at 0.7 kilowatt — and large-scale recycling. India and China are the best users of solar energy.
About 42 per cent of Indians were concerned about environmental problems whereas 35 per cent believe these problems can have adverse impact on their health. While 27 per cent said they were working to reduce the impact, 24 per cent claimed to have attended a demonstration related to environment (against the global average of 9 per cent). About 15 per cent wrote to government or a company on environment issues, the highest for any nation.
Terry Garcia, executive vice-president, National Geographic, said the idea was to inspire consumers in countries with low scores to adopt best behaviours.