The rumors are true, folks — it turns out that the male population is, in fact, the leading cause of global warming... kind of. Climate change was technically caused by pollutive human activities in general, but a new study from Sweden shows that men actually contribute to more climate emissions than women do. Therefore, we're more than prepared to blame mankind for the planet's demise, for the foreseeable future.
Economic data shows that men have a higher environmental impact than women.
A new Swedish study, which was published in the Journal for Industrial Ecology, revealed that single men spent 16 percent more money on pollutive activities than single women. These findings, which were solely based on economic data, showed that men invested more in higher impact endeavors — like car travel, takeout, and alcohol. Women, on the other hand, spent more of their money on lower impact expenditures, such as: home décor, healthcare and clothing.
According to The Independent, the people who were studied were surveyed before they encouraged to transition to eco-friendly alternatives for food and transport, and after. But even after transitioning to lower impact ways of life, the results weren't gender neutral. Results showed that men travel more by plane and car, and drive longer distances. Previous studies have also shown that some men believe environmental consciousness isn't "masculine," and that less men are vegan than women.
Findings from a previous study, according to The Guardian, also found that in families with one car, men were more likely to drive to work than women, who took public transport. So that's also certainly something to take into account for these findings — and for gender differences, in general.
Why is this study important to us, as a society?
This economic data wasn't published with the intent to shame men, people who drive cars, avid travel enthusiasts, or non-vegans; however, it was meant to shed light on the importance of eco-feminism. More women across the globe are affected by poverty than men are on a regular basis, and more women have been displaced due to climate change. Therefore, global warming is perpetuated more by men, despite the fact it greatly affects women on a larger scale.
“The climate crisis is one of the key challenges of our time and affects men and women quite differently,” Austria's climate minister, Leonore Gewessler, told The Guardian. “For instance, the majority of people impacted by energy poverty are women. It is, therefore, crucial to take gender differences into the equation, if we want to develop solutions and a transformation that works for everyone.”
These findings could also help policy-makers make decisions, moving forward — whether that's to encourage people to cut down on meat consumption, or to transition our society to cleaner means of transportation. In the meantime, though, we encourage our male readers to offset emissions by planting some trees, composting, or going vegan — trust us, environmentalism is definitely sexy, and totally macho.