A survey of 28,000 Europeans has found that 79 per cent of them believe that economic growth can be boosted by efficient use of natural resources.
The Eurobarometer survey undertaken by the European Union was last conducted three years ago. Despite the ongoing economic crisis, 95 per cent of Europeans believe that protecting the environment is important to them personally.
Outgoing Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik (pictured) said: “It is good to see such solid and widespread support for the protection of the environment, even in difficult times. People are particularly concerned about air and water pollution, chemicals and waste, and they feel that more must be done by everyone to protect the environment.”
Three quarters of Europeans say they are ready to buy environmentally friendly products, even if it means paying a little more.
While 72 per cent of Europeans say they separate waste for recycling.
But in a warning for major businesses, 77 per cent feel that big companies and industry are not doing enough, 70 per cent think the same of their national government, and 65 per cent believe citizens should do more.
Of those surveyed, 77 per cent agree that European environmental legislation is necessary to protect the environment in their country.