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November 7, 2007 / or4green

CBIA Survey

The Connecticut Business & Industry Association (CBIA) conducted a survey of CT businesses regarding sustainability practices. 397 companies responded, which sounds like a good response even without knowing the total number of surveys sent out. The results show that many companies are taking steps to be more sustainable and/or recognize the value in doing so.

Here are a few results from the survey (the margin for error was +/- 5%) :

– Have you implemented energy cost saving efforts: 62% yes to 38% no

– Are green business practices helpful for attracting a younger workforce: 54% no to 46% yes

– Would you implement green practices if they benefited employee health: 96% yes to 4% no
(Of course, had costs been factored into the question somehow, the results would not have been as clear-cut.)

– Would you adopt green business practices if there were economic incentives for doing so: 78% were somewhat or very likely, with the rest being less so.
(Seems like another clear-cut question in the absence of other information.)

These kinds of surveys are pretty common currently. A 2007 WPP survey queried customers rather than businesses. Changes in numbers versus a 2006 survey are mentioned. It would be interesting to see a similar comparison over time in the business survey results.

How meaningful are such surveys? Consumers are more likely to say they would purchase green products than to actually purchase them. Likewise, businesses might express interest in implementing green practices to benefit employee health, for example, but then never go about doing so in practice. The surveys are positive indicators, but should be viewed cautiously.

Some information about the companies participating in the CBIA survey reveals they represent a number of different industries, sizes, and ownership structures. No mention is made of how the businesses were selected other than that the surveys were emailed. See http://www.cbia.com/green for more information.

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