Many people find it's not easy being green

People who claim to be environmentally conscientious often contradict this stance through the way they behave. This is according to new research from Professor Joan Freeman, a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and Founding President of the European Council for High Ability, who found individuals who say they are green in their outlook may also lead environmentally irresponsible lives, Psychology Today reports.

Entitled Psychology for the Sake of the Environment and appearing in the book Natural Resources, Sustainability and Humanity, the study considers a number of psychological techniques used to influence behaviour and attitudes towards environmental issues.

According to Professor Freeman - who is also the author of Gifted Lives: What Happens When Gifted Children Grow Up? - people may not lead eco-friendly lives because they are unable to see the consequences of their failure to do so, while other individuals are in denial or remain apathetic.

Cultural influences are another factor, with Professor Freeman writing: "Filtering through generations when parents teach their children how to behave [and] it also spreads horizontally, as when a dominant culture will affect others."