Kermit the Frog may have got it only half right when he said "it
ain't easy being green." A new study suggests that when you're green, it
ain't easy being nice, either.
The study, conducted by two University of Toronto professors, found
that consumers who bought environmentally friendly products were less
likely to be altruistic and more likely to cheat and steal.
"Purchasing green products may produce the counterintuitive effect of
licensing asocial and unethical behaviours by establishing moral
credentials," the study found. "Thus, green products do not necessarily
make us better people."
Titled Do Green Products Make Us Better People?, the study by Nina
Mazar and Chen-Bo Zhong is set to be published in the next issue of the
Psychological Science journal.
Mazar, a self-described green consumer, says she was surprised that
buying green products appeared to sanction bad behaviours. "It went
beyond just how nice people were to others," she told CBC News.
The professors found that participants who bought green products in
the study were also more likely to lie and steal money.
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