Determinants of the proenvironmental consumption behavior of Chinese rural residents
Xingdong Wang (Jiangxi Agricultural University), Ming Tu (Huazhong Agricultural University), and Jinyong Guo (Jiangxi Agricultural University), 2014, 42(10), 1661–1674

Proenvironmental consumption behavior (PCB) is a vital issue because the environmental future of the world is at stake. I believe that PCB should be undertaken in every country. This is especially so in China where, after 30 years of reform, remarkable economic success has been achieved. Unfortunately, this has been at a great cost: China is one of the largest and most polluted countries in the world, with severe environmental problems.

This is of great concern to me. I live in Christchurch, New Zealand, where changes in our trash collection have resulted in citizens sorting household waste into green, recycling, and general rubbish. These changes have challenged my previous blasé attitude toward PCB, which not only minimizes harm to the environment but may also benefit it.

In their article, which involves Chinese rural residents, the authors discuss the influence of man-nature orientation, an important dimension of Chinese traditional culture, on PCB. This means that the Chinese people strongly emphasize living in harmony with nature. This view, coupled with the positive association between the Chinese collectivist society and eco-friendly consumption, would indicate that Chinese rural residents would be more likely than others to conduct PCB.

However, it was disappointing that results showed that proenvironmental intention did not translate effectively into the rural residents’ corresponding behavior and commitment. This may have been because of their view that proenvironmental products are not easily available and also because of their lack of conviction regarding the environmental credibility of the claims of these products. Their view that it is mainly the government’s responsibility to protect the environment may also have contributed to the results. The authors’ practical suggestions of well-planned and informative education and public marketing campaigns by the government make this article useful and enlightening.

Katharine Samuel | Copyeditor
Social Behavior and Personality: an international journal