To put it bluntly, people, particularly Americans, do not care about the environment. In an article titled Do People Really Care About the Environment, they discuss a survey developed and conducted by National Geographic to measure the sustainability of consumers in multiple countries. In 2014, they surveyed 18,000 people across 18 countries. Though many may think that China and India would rank lowly, with the US gaining a higher ranking, this was not the case. India, China, and South Korea took the top three spots, while the United states was ranked last among the 18 countries. Americans also were among the least likely to feel guilty about their impact on the environment, regardless that they scored highly as believing that the choices that individuals make do have an impact.
In another survey detailing the priorities of Americans, protecting the environment scored 11th among the top 18 priorities. Startlingly, dealing with global warming scored last. Although these statistics are disheartening, they do not come as a surprise. This lack of care is clear to me on a daily basis. For example, when I see someone put each grocery in a separate disposable plastic bag at the store, or when I see someone drinking out of a disposable plastic water bottle. In summary, Americans know the negative impacts of their actions on the environment, yet they simply do not care to change them.