The work, released today (August 2) by ‘Big Six’ energy giant EDF, reveals the UK slips from sixth to joint eighth place in the second annual pan-European Low Energy Alternative Future (LEAF) index.

EDF asked 5,511 respondents across Europe for their views on sustainability and low energy living.

The data was then analysed by Imperial College London’s Energy Futures Lab, led by Professor Nigel Brandon, and countries were ranked on their positive attitudes to sustainability issues.

Research, which charts European attitudes to sustainability, shows the UK’s score is improving but not at the same rate as our continental neighbours.

Surprisingly perhaps Turkey tops the LEAF Index, climbing from third place last year, with three-quarters (75%) of those surveyed expressing concern about climate change.

Sweden and Germany also make leaps up the table, but the Netherlands remain in the lowest position, where only 69% of respondents have made changes in an effort to be ‘greener.’

While 81% of British respondents said they have already made some changes to their lifestyle to be ‘greener’, the same result as the 2010 survey

Imperial College London director of the energy futures, professor Nigel Brandon, said: “This year’s study has drawn up some very interesting patterns in behaviour and attitudes towards the environment across Europe and shown very strong consistency in its results.

“Whilst some countries inevitably perform better than others, the great finding this year has been that all countries have improved since we last carried out the research; a very positive sign indeed.

“All that remains is for those countries towards the bottom end of the table and Britain in particular, to take those steps necessary to catch up with the leaders.”

Luke Walsh

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