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Poll: Enviro ideals no match for reality

PEOPLE in Slovakia know that the environment needs to be protected, but when it comes to their actual behavior, the picture is different.

PEOPLE in Slovakia know that the environment needs to be protected, but when it comes to their actual behavior, the picture is different.

As many as 75.1 percent of those questioned in a recent MVK agency survey said that they would be against the building of a factory that polluted the atmosphere, even if it would create many new jobs.

However, 67.1 percent of respondents also confessed to throwing used batteries away along with their other rubbish, the daily SME reported.

The agency quizzed 1,132 respondents on the issue from December 19 to 29, 2005.

Of those questioned, 43.7 percent said that they would definitely be against such a new factory, while 31.4 percent said they would probably oppose it. Only 5.1 percent of respondents said they would definitely support the new plant, while 14.8 percent said they would probably support it. The remaining 4.9 percent said they did not know how they would behave in such a situation.

Professor Hana Librová from the School of Social Sciences at Masaryk University in the Czech city of Brno says that when people are asked about imaginary scenarios, they know how they are supposed to react. In this case the results show that they adopted the "moral norm" to protect the environment.

Nevertheless, when questioned about reality, the same people showed that they are not that worried about environmental issues after all.

Librová says that people would react differently if a foreign investor proposed building a new factory in their local area. "The opportunity for new jobs would win out in the end," she says.

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