Environmental Behavior of Youth and Sustainable Development

Sustainability 14 (1):250 (2022)
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Abstract

The relationship between people and nature is one of the most important current issues of human survival. This circumstance makes it necessary to educate young people who are receptive to global challenges and ready to solve the urgent problems of our time. The purpose of the article is to analyze the experience of the environmental behavior of young people in the metropolis. The authors studied articles and monographs that contain Russian and international experience in the environmental behavior of citizens. The following factors determine people’s behavior: the cognitive capabilities of people who determine the understanding and perception of nature and the value-affective component that determines the attitude towards nature. The next task of the study is surveying young people through an online survey and its analysis. The research was realized in Ekaterinburg, the administrative center of the Sverdlovsk region (Russia). The study of the current ecological situation in Ekaterinburg made it possible to conclude that the environmental problem arises not only and not simply as a problem of environmental pollution and other negative influences of human economic activity. This problem grows into transforming the spontaneous impact of society on nature into a consciously, purposefully, systematically developing harmonious interaction with it. The study results showed that, from the point of view of the youth of Ekaterinburg, the city’s ecological situation is one of the most pressing problems. Despite minor improvements over the past 3–5 years, this problem has not lost relevance, and regional authorities and city residents should be responsible for its solution. Young people know environmental practices, but they often do not apply them systematically. Ecological behavior is encouraged and discussed among friends/acquaintances. The key factors influencing the formation of environmental behavior practices are the mass media and social networks. The most popular social network for obtaining information on ecological practices among young people is Instagram, and the key persons are bloggers. This study did not reveal the influence of the socio-demographic characteristics of young people on the application of eco-behavior practices, which may indicate the need for a survey of a larger sample.

Author's Profile

Anna Shutaleva
Ural Federal University (PhD)

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