Consumers globally to reduce greenhouse emissions, says study

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Mumbai, Oct 17 (UNI) Nearly nine out of 10 consumers world-wide said that they will switch to energy providers which offer products and services that help reduce the level of greenhouse gas emissions, according to a study by global management consulting firm, Accenture.

The study, based on a survey of more than 7,500 consumers in 17 countries in North America, Europe and Asia, found that 89 per cent of all consumers surveyed will switch to energy providers that offer lower-carbon-emitting products and services.

While respondents across the world are concerned about climate change and its impact, the concern appears to be greatest in emerging market countries. Ninety-seven per cent of consumers surveyed in Brazil, China and India said they are concerned about climate change, compared with 85 per cent of all respondents. Ninety-eight per cent of respondents from these three emerging-market countries said that they believe that climate change will directly affect their lives, compared with just 73 per cent of respondents in Europe.

Respondents in emerging-market countries are most aware to achieve their targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. For instance, more than 80 per cent of respondents said that they avoid taking the car (82 per cent, compared with an average of 68 per cent for all other respondents) and avoid buying food imported by plane (82 per cent, compared with an average of 63 per cent for all other respondents).

Nine out of 10 of all respondents said that they have a negative perception of any energy provider that is not taking concrete action to address climate change. Further, more than half (54 per cent) said that they are willing to switch electricity and gas providers if their current provider didn't take action to address climate change, and 61 per cent said the same of their oil providers.

In addition, nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) of respondents said that they are willing to pay a higher price 'a premium of 11 per cent, on average' for products and services that produce lower greenhouse gas emissions.

Accenture Chief Executive Sander Van't Noordende said, ''Accenture's research suggests that while the initial impact in business terms may be most evident on energy providers, it seems likely that this impact will increasingly spread to other resources companies either directly or as the impact trickles through the supply chain from consumer-facing businesses.'' The study found that individuals are taking lead on climate change in response to deep concern over its effects on their everyday lives. The vast majority (85 per cent) of respondents said that they are either 'extremely' or 'somewhat' concerned about climate change, and 81 per cent said that they believe it will directly affect their lives.

While the majority (more than 80 per cent) of consumers said that they believe the climate change will have the greatest impact on weather and ecosystem, three out of four (74 per cent) said that they believe it will also have a significant effect on people's health.

''This seismic and rapid shift in the global consumer landscape presents major opportunities for companies who take the lead in addressing consumers' climate change concerns and values, giving them a competitive advantage and differentiation in the eyes of consumers,'' Mr Van't Noordende said.


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