Consumers' environmental Behavior: Generalized, Sector-Based, or Compensatory?

Bratt, C. (1999). Consumers' environmental beahvior: Generalized, sector-based, or compensatory?. Environment and Behavior, 31(1), 28-44.

Investigated the possibility that actions meant to improve recycling may have unintended consequences in fields other than the target behavior. The relations between self-reported environmental behavior in several sectors in studied, with particular attention given to the question of whether increased recycling may develop into a compensatory behavior for less environmentally friendly behavior elsewhere. Results from a survey including approximately 1,500 consumers are presented. No tendencies toward compensatory behavior are detected. The author notes that the survey does not indicate that the introduction of measures meant to increase recycling brings increased attitudinal support for compensatory behavior. At the same time, the survey supports the view that there is no general environmental behavior among consumers. On the other hand, the correlations between different behaviors increase when the behaviors in question become more similar. Questions in the survey analyzed in the article are appended.

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