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Do you have ‘green guilt’? A quarter of people exaggerate how environmentally conscious they are

August 11, 2018

By Paul Homewood


Beware of opinion polls!!



The widespread consumer outcry over the excessive use of plastic worldwide has led to many companies taking action to curb the material’s use.

Starbucks last week introduced a 5p "latte levy" on its paper cups in a bid to reduce single-use paper and plastic waste, while McDonald’s confirmed last month that it would stop using plastic straws across all of its UK and Ireland restaurants, replacing them with paper alternatives from September.

But new research by Legal & General Investment Management shows that, while the UK is a nation of aspiring environmentalists, with 92pc of 18- to 55-year-olds saying that minimising their impact on the environment is important to them, more than a quarter (26pc) exaggerate their environmental credentials to alleviate "green guilt".

The findings, based on a survey of 2,003 people, reveal that many consumers feel the need to embellish how much recycling, reusing, and refilling they really do in order to maintain a "green social status".

A fifth of those asked said their friends would judge them negatively if they were not behaving responsibly towards the environment, as the "Attenborough Effect" intensifies.

  1. August 11, 2018 1:18 pm

    Surely nobody takes opinion polls seriously. It’s evident that almost everybody lies or exaggerates when taking part in these polls.

  2. Immune to propaganda permalink
    August 11, 2018 1:30 pm

    The green propaganda starts in primary schools and continues into secondary schools. It takes up quite a large part of the curriculum. You also get ‘sponsored ‘ propaganda lessons from Unicef!!!

  3. cajwbroomhill permalink
    August 11, 2018 1:57 pm

    Hope tachyphylaxis will set in, boring us all so that the Greens will go unnoticed, unless talking common sense!
    Same applies to P.C.

  4. Joe Public permalink
    August 11, 2018 2:10 pm

    Or, if a corporate, do you wish to virtue signal:

    • JerryC permalink
      August 11, 2018 2:41 pm

      I love how the sign denouncing plastic straws is right above all those plastic utensils.

    • JerryC permalink
      August 11, 2018 3:19 pm

      The sign is also coated in plastic. Just sayin’.

      • Sheri permalink
        August 11, 2018 3:59 pm

        They haven’t found a sea turtle with a plastic fork up its nose. If that occurs, the forks go. Likewise, if the turtle is sufficated by loose plastic, the plastic coating goes. Turtles are the acid test of bad plastic.

  5. It doesn't add up... permalink
    August 11, 2018 2:51 pm

    Starbucks last week introduced a 5p “latte levy” on its paper cups in a bid to reduce single-use paper and plastic waste price increase. Never waste a green virtue signalling opportunity to increase profits.

  6. Tim Spence permalink
    August 11, 2018 2:58 pm

    It’s a good photo, demonstrates how the sea delivers all the rubbish to the high tide mark and leaves it sorted and graded, algaes lower down, plastic bottles higher and on top, other stuff in between.

  7. August 11, 2018 3:37 pm

    There would be no chance of processing society’s trash without fuel-powered machinery.

  8. Stonyground permalink
    August 11, 2018 4:16 pm

    Is not the withdrawing of plastic drinking straws just the most absurd token gesture ever? Nowadays just about everything is made of plastic but somehow banning plastic straws will make it all better. Since the biggest problem seems to be plastics ending up in the sea, the only real solution is to identify how it is ending up there and to take the necessary steps to prevent it happening. Presumably this is too difficult. Or is it that the thing that greens really hate more than anything is an actual solution to the problem?

    • August 11, 2018 4:28 pm

      We could just burn the trash but doing so would emit that evil CO2 which “contributes” (whatever that means) to climate change. And if the problem was solved then Greens would lose their moral superiority and virtue signaling. That what this is about really. Thinking you are better than others. If they really cared about it, they would come up with better and realistic ideas, debate skeptics instead of shutting them down, think about the consequences of their solutions, and stop using anything made of plastic or with the help of fossil fuels.

  9. JCalvertN permalink
    August 11, 2018 5:14 pm

    IN this decade, one will be ostracised and lose many friends if you don’t: listen to BBC Radio 4; read The Guardian, shop at Waitrose, paint the house with Farrow & Ball, have timber flooring, believe everything that’s said in the MSM about climate change, and virtue-signal desperately.

  10. Patsy Lacey permalink
    August 11, 2018 6:23 pm

    I really despair of the generation currently at school. My eight year old granddaughter was told by her primary teacher that good people vote “green”. Fortunately my daughter and son-in-law (both teachers) were horrified. This was the same teacher who circumvented the SATs exams by showing children who didn’t reach a certain standard their mistakes and had the correct them!
    I personally do not believe in the global warming scam but I have tried to comply with our local 5 bin recycling because we live on an island and have limited landfill space.
    Bin 1 for garden waste. B2 = food waste. Bin 3 = paper and cardboard. Bin 4 all recycling (glass tins plastic etc) Bin 5 Non recycling.
    Then I learned that black plastic and fruit punnets cannot be recycled and a lot of it goes to Poland to be burnt in areas where Poles cannot object or are ignored if they do! Why should I bother?

    • Ian permalink
      August 12, 2018 11:40 pm

      The irony is that school children are a major source of litter, particularly where a sweet shop is in the vicinity of a school. Fortunately for me, I live just beyond the buy-unwrap-eat-throw radius.

      • Ian permalink
        August 12, 2018 11:42 pm

        OT, but I think Paul’s clock is still on GMT unless Summer Time ended and nobody told me …

      • August 13, 2018 7:26 am

        My local Morrison’s store is next to a school and there is a trail of litter between the two.
        I have been tempted to ask the store to ban them (not going to happen) or the head of the school to suggest daily parties of children to collect the litter, but that would probably be against their human rights.

  11. Up2snuff permalink
    August 11, 2018 7:22 pm

    Is it just me or have people started to take even less care about littering since the BBC started banging on about plastic?

    It appears to be the case where I live. How about you?

  12. Colin Brooks permalink
    August 11, 2018 7:43 pm

    The only guilt I feel is for not being brave enough to go out and shoot any green activists yet.

  13. August 12, 2018 10:21 am

    Citizens Advice have called for the target for smart meter installation to be delayed from 2020 to 2023.
    I have got news for them, it won’t need to be delayed because it won’t be achieved any way.

    “Robert Cheesewright, from Smart Energy GB, which promotes understanding of smart meters, said: “Smart meters will deliver billions of pounds worth of savings to our economy, and will pave the way for a cleaner, greener and more efficient energy system.”

    • August 12, 2018 11:23 am

      Cheesewright ? – sounds like onomatopoeia in action for Soho based advertising / PR pondlife

  14. Athelstan permalink
    August 12, 2018 11:18 am

    I don’t regard myself as ‘green’ I am however, careful and do not like to litter nor waste water or energy unnecessarily, however I reserve the right to do exactly as I like within reason, if it is required to help me and my own.

    What grates, I am heartily sick and to the back teeth of virtue signalling zealots, all green devoted idiots who wish to try to guilt trip the law abiding UK public.
    And not least in the same breath – spinning their incredible lies and BS palliatives which they preposterously claim ‘help the environment’ when they actually do nothing, not one thing to help the environment, indeed all evidence points to the fact that from; birdmincers to PV arrays and biodigesters and the whole gamut of ‘green’ idiocies actually DAMAGES the environment.

    Fook em all, the green hogwash distributers with me and long ago: their guilt tripping falls on deaf ears.

  15. August 12, 2018 11:20 am

    Looks like a battery storage charm offensive is kicking off…..

    The IET have a presentation of “Commercial Battery Storage” at Taunton College on Tuesday 18 Sept from EDF and contractors.

    Presentation free for member and non-members

    I somehow doubt that the underlying rationale will be honestly discussed or presented.

    Is it “battery storage”, an active frequency stabiliser or a vehicle set up to flummox politicians and public servants to wave more public funds into “renewable” technology?

    There seems little coverage of the problem that these battery units are being deployed to remedy.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      August 12, 2018 3:53 pm

      It’s not storage, but frequency response. Indeed, half the job will be consuming power during periods of over-frequency. The whole thing is very technical – way beyond the understanding of the average BBC science correspondent.

      The storage is tiny – about 30 mins at full capacity – but the battery will spend most of its life about half charged.

      There’s an FAQ here – of itself quite technical:

  16. Stonyground permalink
    August 12, 2018 4:52 pm

    My impression of green types is that they are very ignorant about how things work while at the same time thinking themselves much more knowledgeable than the rest of us. They also tend to take the products of the modern world completely for granted and have no clue that all their hi tech toys would be taken away from them if even half of their ideas ever became reality.

  17. Ian permalink
    August 12, 2018 11:36 pm

    JCalvertN above forgot to include Glastonbury and the like, where attendees dump waste by the tonne, including wellies, tents and such but nobody makes the connection. There was some fuss in Manchester today after a shooting at the local carnival. The streets looked like a war zone without the extra drama, thanks to litter dropped by carnival-goers. The local authority was thoughtful in having a road sweeper on hand, though; on double time, of course.

    • dave permalink
      August 13, 2018 7:59 am

      Maue has updated his useful charts of numbers of tropical cyclones and their intensities:

      All seems normal – a “normal” which involves considerable natural variability, of course. There have been a couple of prolonged storms in the Pacific, recently, which did not land.

      He has not updated the chart at the very bottom. As this involves the slightly confusing melding of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, whose seasons are offset to one another by six months, this may be deliberate.

      Government Agencies are predicting an average season in the Caribbean.

      On the guilt thing we must not forget Dr Heinz Kiosk was first into the field. Whatever the subject, according to Peter Simple he simply said:

      “We are all guilty!”

  18. Stonyground permalink
    August 13, 2018 6:53 am

    English Heritage used to have an annual event called The Festival Of History. A big get together for battle re-enactment types. Areas dedicated to different periods, demonstrations of crafts and how they used to make stuff in the past, stalls selling reproduction period clothes, all that kind of stuff. One time when I was there I was suddenly struck by the fact that there was a complete absence of littering. The type of people who attend the FOH always use the bins and make sure that their sprogs do likewise.

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