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 www.direct.gov.uk/ActOnCO2 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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