The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Swiss demand more sustainability from companies and the state

More than half of the Swiss are demanding more sustainability from companies and the state. But consumers should also exert more influence.

This is the conclusion of a study published on Monday by the consulting firm Deloitte. It surveyed 1900 people living in Switzerland. According to the company, the survey is representative.

Overall, two thirds of respondents believe that companies have a duty to make the country more sustainable. 61% see the state and 53% themselves as consumers as having a responsibility.

According to Liza Engel, Head of Sustainability at Deloitte Switzerland, this leads to a dilemma. "Consumers are waiting for companies and governments to act, while companies and governments are waiting for consumer demand to drive change."

Companies should emit less CO2

It is less clear what measures respondents expect companies to take. Most think that companies should use more environmentally friendly materials (57%), emit fewer greenhouse gases (51%) and offer more sustainable products (51%).

Around half of those surveyed support government subsidies for more environmentally friendly and sustainable behavior. For example, a tax deduction for bicycle commuters or subsidies for vegan food. In French-speaking Switzerland, subsidies are more popular overall than the national average.

Respondents also support investment in research (46%) and in education and awareness-raising (42%) for sustainable behavior. Respondents showed little support for additional regulation for companies and consumers (29%) and the taxation of less sustainable products (27%).

Making consumption more sustainable

Around three quarters of respondents also stated that they wanted to make their behavior more sustainable in the next twelve months - especially young people and city dwellers.

When it comes to food, 57% want to become more sustainable, for example by eating less meat. Around half of those surveyed want to make their consumption more environmentally friendly by consuming fewer goods and services. 48 percent want to save energy and water.

©Keystone/SDA

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