New Year brings green pledges

As another New Year dawns, many people in the UK will be thinking up their pledges for 2008 - but how many of those New Year resolutions will be to become more green and combat climate change?

According to a YouGov survey, just 6% of people think that resolutions to become greener are the most important pledges they can make this year.

A quarter of those questioned said that getting fit was top of their list, followed by aiming to be a better person and get on better with family, friends and colleagues.

However, a poll by electricity supplier npower said 69% of people planned to make being greener their number one New Year’s Resolution.

The study of 1,000 people found that 45- to 54-year-olds are leading the green charge with 98% claiming to make a huge effort to be green.

Defra ministers encouraged everyone to change their behaviour in 2008 with the help of the Government’s online carbon calculator.

Environment secretary Hilary Benn said: “It is imperative that we all do our bit to try to limit the effects of climate change.

“More than 500,000 people have already logged on to to find out how they can reduce their carbon footprint and we’re hoping many more will do the same throughout 2008.”

In the City, a survey of FTSE 100 companies found that creating more sustainable offices is the top green New Year’s resolution for 2008.

A quarter of the UK’s leading businesses said they want to make their offices more energy efficient, while 23% plan to reduce carbon emissions from operations and 13% have resolved to incorporate renewable energy sources.

Nick Warren, from Chatsworth Communications, which carried out the survey, said: “Climate change has swept the social, political and media agenda in 2007 and there has been a corresponding sea change in UK business’ stance on sustainability.”

Kate Martin

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