Sorry, Planet Earth, but don’t count on millennials to save you.
Despite a reputation for being socially, politically and environmentally “woke”—to the point of caricature by their curmudgeonly forebears—the demographic born between 1982 and 2000, per the U.S. Census Bureau (and 1981 and 1996, according to the Pew Research Center) isn’t about to martyr themselves on the altar of the greater good.
This might go against everything we think we know about the avocado-toast-loving, safe-space-demanding, ownership-averse group. An oft-quoted 2015 Nielsen Global Corporate Survey, after all, found that 73 percent of millennials, versus 66 percent of the general population, are willing to pay extra for items that dovetail with their progressive values.
But intent and action can be very different animals. And when it comes to triggering an actual purchase, recent research shows that sustainability isn’t the foremost consideration you might think.