Forced conservation measures made Californians more ‘water-wise’: study

Read the full story at The Hill.

Mandatory cuts in water usage have had a long-lasting impact on Californians, who have continued to espouse “water-wise” values even after such restrictions have been lifted, a new study has found.

Although water usage crept up somewhat when 2015-2016 cuts ended, consumption in 2019 was still lower than it was in 2013, according to the study, published on Tuesday in Water Resources Research.

Using social media to reduce Black women’s exposures to toxic chemicals in consumer products

This project, conducted by the Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) and the Silent Spring Institute in partnership with the Resilient Sisterhood Project, worked to educate women about chemical exposures that can contribute to hormone disruption, asthma, diabetes, and cancer risk among Black women, and to share information about safer alternatives. The first year of the project focused on learning more about how women make choices about the products they purchase and use. The second year focused on sharing information widely by training and supporting social media influencers.

Read more about the project on the TURI website.

A chat may help convert a peer to a pro-sustainability stance

Read the full story from Ohio State University.

Changing the mind of someone who is dismissive of efforts to protect the planet could be accomplished by sharing a pro-sustainability point of view during a conversation, new research suggests.

Will Mill be a game-changing solution to home food waste?

Read the full story at Sustainable Brands.

The Mill system offers a practical, circular solution for reducing home food waste and the resulting, climate-changing greenhouse gases — with minimal effort on the part of users.

Childhood trauma linked to civic environmental engagement, green behavior

Read the full story from the University of Colorado.

Experiencing childhood trauma may lead an individual to volunteer, donate money or contact their elected officials about environmental issues later in life, according to recent research published in Scientific Reports.

The CU Boulder and Loyola University study is one of the first in the U.S. to associate childhood trauma and public, civic environmental engagement in adulthood. It also found that, in addition to people who experienced childhood trauma, those who traveled and had experiences in nature as children were also more likely to report engaging in private “green behavior” as adults, such as recycling, driving or flying less, and taking shorter showers.

New recycling bin design discourages people from tossing in trash

Read the full story at The Japan News.

Vending machine and beverage manufacturing organizations have come up with a peculiar plastic bottle recycling bin. The receptacle’s opening points downward as part of efforts to prevent people from tossing other waste into the bin.

The idea is now attracting attention for promoting PET bottle recycling.

Climate change and human behaviour

Read the series in Nature.

The Earth is heating up fast because of anthropogenic climate change. Global greenhouse emissions continue to rise, while extreme weather events ravage lives, livelihoods and ecosystems. Scientists warn of impending disaster without urgent, decisive action. Human behaviour is not only the driver of climate change, but also crucial in fighting and mitigating its impacts. This Focus, a collaboration between Nature Human Behaviour and Nature Climate Change, features a broad range of Review and Opinion content on the role of human behaviour in adaption to climate change and mitigation of its negative consequences. This new content is complemented by relevant empirical research across the Nature Portfolio journals.

Here’s how solidarity persuades people to make sacrifices for the climate

Read the full story at Anthropocene Magazine.

In a new survey, people were more willing to pay for climate action in their country if other countries are implementing similar policies.

Study: People who lack compassion for the environment are also less emotional in general

Read the full story from the University of Michigan.

People who respond less emotionally to images of damage to the environment are also less emotional and empathic in general, according to a new University of Michigan study.

Differences in political ideology can limit policy adjustments that address climate change. Researchers and practitioners often raise concern by appealing to people’s empathy.

However, some people appear less emotionally impacted by environmental destruction—particularly those who are more ideologically conservative and less pro-environmental, the study showed.

Increasing agricultural conservation outreach through social science

Jessica Espenshade, Adam Reimer and Lekha Knuffman (2022). “Increasing agricultural conservation outreach through social science.” Journal of Soil and Water Conservation 77 (4) 56A-59A; DOI:

Abstract: The sustainability challenges facing US agriculture now are more complex and challenging than the technological and productivity challenges of the previous century (Batie 2009). Addressing these challenges requires a different approach to conservation outreach. In this paper, we outline a new approach that leverages the social sciences and an understanding of human decision making to increase the effectiveness of outreach efforts and improve the sustainability of US agriculture.