NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - Most Americans have adopted an environmentally-friendly lifestyle at home but only half have made the effort to go green at work, according to a survey released on Thursday.
A poll by Harris Interactive found that 93 percent of employed respondents conserve energy by turning off lights, computers or the television when leaving home for the day but only 50 percent do the same when leaving work.
The top reasons cited to “turn-off” at home were to save money - 85 percent - and to help the environment - 53 percent.
But while the same reasons apply at work, the percentages were significantly lower with only 36 percent turning off to conserve money and 30 percent to conserve energy -- even though 87 percent of employees say it is at least “somewhat important” that their employer offer green-friendly programs at work.
“The survey suggests that while most employees want their employers to offer environmental initiatives at work, they do not always take part in programs or initiatives that are available,” said Eric Buntin, spokesman for staffing company Randstad USA which commissioned the survey.
“This brings up a significant question for employers who are deciding how to balance employee needs, social responsibilities and company priorities.”
The online survey of 2,079 workers conducted between Jan 17-21 found very little difference in the “green” practices of different age groups at home or at work.
While 95 percent of respondents aged 18 to 34 turn off while at home so do 91 percent of people aged 55 and older.
Regardless of age, the survey found that more than 75 percent of employed respondents recycle overall, but less than half, or only 49 percent, recycle at work.
“Employees may feel that their efforts aren’t as effective in the workplace as they are at home,” Buntin said.
“In order for employers to encourage green-friendly practices at work, they must make sure that green practices are easy to implement, and communicate to employees that their efforts make a difference - that conserving energy boosts paychecks, and that recycling doesn’t end up in the trash bin at the end of the day.”
Writing by Belinda Goldsmith, editing by Patricia Reaney
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