Overwhelming shift towards sustainability practices among ANZ consumers

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On the occasion of the upcoming International Earth Day celebrations, research conducted by visual media material platform iStock revealed that 95 per cent of people in Australia and New Zealand are personally practising sustainability.

The research noted that this figure number reached its peak during spring of 2021 (at 96 per cent) around the time when governments from over 30 countries pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 at the 2021 Leaders’ Climate Summit, organized by US President Joe Biden’s administration.

In addition, iStock’s creative insights platform Visual GPS captured findings that indicated a level of consistency in people’s commitment toward a sustainable lifestyle, showing percentages above 90 per cent since the summer of 2020 to 2021.

When breaking down what this commitment looks like, results showed recycling is still considered the most prominent way for ANZ consumers to make a positive impact on the planet (78 per cent), followed by reusing, repairing, buying second-hand, using eco-friendly products, and making their homes energy-efficient (46 per cent), and stopping the use of single-use products and making transport choices that reduce the use of gasoline/petrol/diesel (35 per cent). Only nine per cent suggested joining associations or advocacy groups or donating to causes or charities that support sustainability and the environment as a way to show support and commitment to protecting the planet.

However, while people increasingly believe they’ve made personal progress towards living a more sustainable lifestyle, 60 per cent have said their government could be doing more to combat climate change with 40 per cent expressing confidence that their government is doing everything in their power; 70 per cent also believe businesses should take the lead if the government fails to.

Dr Rebecca Swift, Global Head of Creative Insights at iStock commented on the findings saying, “Our research also shows while consumers are carrying out some positive actions in their day-to-day lives, they still lack understanding of how such important issues like climate change, impact their daily lives. This represents an opportunity for small businesses and entrepreneurs to show their communities how they are committed to sustainability, how they can support their customers to be more sustainable via their offerings and demonstrate the benefits of having a more sustainable lifestyle”