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[GreenYes] Re: Help with Demographics

Title: [GreenYes] Re: Help with Demographics


Interesting enough...there may not be a certain demographic. 

Upon reading the results of a recycling survey conducted last fall in Merced County, CA and personal observations from working in Fresno, CA, there didn't see to be a default demographic of who is more willing to recycle.

What did seem to matter was the mentality of the individuals about recycling and how much exposure they've had to recycling education.

I did waste audits and education for businesses and multi-family units in Fresno, as well as "running the routes" in different residential neighborhoods.  It was interesting because in some of the "better off" communities, people would put their recycling can out just because they would see their neighbors doing it.  However, upon opening their recycling cans...nothing was in them!  You can then go to a neighborhood of "first generations" and the recycling can would be full of recyclables.  When talking to a few individuals from this type of neighborhood, people said they just wanted to do what was asked of them and that they wanted to follow the rules.

These are a few examples; not necessarily true for all neighborhoods.  It varied from neighborhood to neighborhood, whether from the same or different demographics.  (You could try to get in contact with the City of Fresno's Code Enforcement.  They continually go from neighborhood to neighborhood, looking inside recycling cans to make sure everyone's doing their part.)

I'm not sure about a target demographic for recycling, but what seemed to be the main force in recycling was one or all of the following mentalities:

1) If I do it, I want to get something out of it. (incentives)
2) I want to follow the rules.
3) I want to do what's right for the environment.
4) I want to do it as long as my curbside cans are protected from "scavengers"
5) I'll do it as long as it doesn't interrupt my daily routine (make it convenient).

This also goes along with how recycling is presented to the public and how much (and in what way) recycling education is provided to them.  It seemed that recycling would take place if there was a strong, pro-recycling leader in the household, or even if there were pro-recycling children in the household that learned about recycling at school.   

Hope this helps.

Jennifer Halpin

Recycling Information Specialist
Merced County Association of Governments (MCAG)
Ph: 209-723-3153 ext. 315
Fax: 209-723-0322

>>> C <cannon.fletcher@no.address> 06/28/2008 10:55 AM >>>

Hi -

This may be redundant based on prior discussions, if so please point
me to the correct thread.

I am looking for demographics related to the US and recycling and/or
"green" surveys.  What ages are more inclined to recycle, what income
bracket, etc.  I would like to marry this data with other data
specific to our industry to try to pull together support for our

Also, a key data point would be if there have been any surveys of
active (recreation - jog, tennis, golf, sports, etc) versus sedentary
(watch TV all day) and if there is any statistical evidence for one
set being more apt to recycle.

Another would be if there is a link between "organic foods" and


- Cannon

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