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Examining the Adverse Effects of the Cost of Living Crisis on Sustainability

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The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly shifted people's perspectives on the importance of environmental sustainability. A 2021 study by the IBM Institute for Business Value found that Covid-19 had an impact on 93% of respondents globally. 

We have seen the importance of sustainability for consumers continue to increase in 2022. 

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A study by the same group revealed that 51% of respondents believed environmental sustainability to be more important to them than it was 12 months ago, and 49% said they had paid a premium for sustainable products during that time.

This shift in perspective was a positive sign, indicating that the public was increasingly getting behind sustainability. 

However, in 2022, people all around the world saw their food and energy costs skyrocket, and the cost of living crisis became the hottest topic of conversation, dominating headlines.

71 million people in developing countries fell into poverty as a result of these price increases.. It also hit the most developed countries, with one in four people struggling financially. 

By May 2022, The Food Foundation reported that nearly one in seven adults in the UK said they could not afford to eat every day - an increase of 57% since the start of the year.

The popularity of nearly every other environmental cause also caused them to fall in the rankings: "the plastic crisis," "biodiversity and species extinction," and "the health of our oceans" all fell by at least seven spots. 

Our data demonstrate that people's environmental concerns have simply decreased from those of a year ago.

It would be incorrect to assume that people are no longer worried about climate change or environmental sustainability. People's focus is increasingly shifting to issues.

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