Homeowners with children are Ireland’s most environmentally conscious citizens, the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office reveals.
In an once-off survey of household environmental behaviours polled by the CSO in the second half of 2014, owner-occupied households with children scored the highest overall when it comes to employing measures to reduce waste, disposing of recyclable waste and recognising energy rating labels.
But when it comes to buying a car, only a tiny fraction of the population – just 2pc – cited environmental concerns ahead of annual fuel cost which was the most important determinant for 28pc of buyers, followed by annual motor tax (18pc), other running costs (14pc), and family requirements (12pc).
The survey also found that more than a third of the population (35pc) uses natural gas to heat their homes – especially in the Capital where 72pc use gas – while more than a third (34pc) of households in the Midlands and 24pc of households in the West use peat.
It also revealed that slightly over half the population (51pc) reduce food waste by only purchasing what can be used before the sell-by date while a small fraction (2pc) don’t recycle any household waste.
When it comes to heating and cooking, 52pc of households use an immersion heater to get hot water while 65pc of households use electricity to cook.
And when it comes to rejecting flyers and other junk mail, Dubliners are much more likely to put ‘No Junk Mail’ signs on their post boxes, with 25pc of residents in the Dublin region posting such messages as opposed to just 3pc of rural households.