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Brussels, Belgium – After the successful uptake of 200,000 tests across eight European countries, the PS Lifestyle Test – which helps people measure their environmental impact and adopt a more sustainable lifestyle – has launched an EU-wide version. The web application was unveiled last September in Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia and Turkey as part of the EU-funded project PSLifestyle, with support from ICLEI Europe. In addition to encouraging individuals to reduce their climate impact through tailored lifestyle changes, the test’s dataset of lifestyle habits will allow policymakers, academics, civil society and industry stakeholders to more effectively address collective environmental challenges.

The Lifestyle Test’s mission is to marry individual and systemic change through anonymous tracking. The data provided by the tests offers a comprehensive understanding of consumer and lifestyle habits across European countries. Early insights from this dataset point to critical perspectives on individual habits, aspirations for positive change, and the barriers impeding the adoption of new behaviours.

The data highlights a prevalent desire for guidance among users, with a significant proportion citing “lack of know-how” as a key obstacle to living a more sustainable lifestyle. This presents an opportunity for policymakers and industry to provide practical solutions, from educational resources to innovative products and services.

Responses have also revealed that approximately 8 -10% of users create a plan of action upon completion of the test, with some countries exhibiting even higher rates, such as Italy with 20 – 25%. The current total number of plans formed via the app is 18,000. These plans are designed to help users reduce their carbon footprint; the median footprint of users is 7500kg, with the average plan made promising a reduction of roughly 2250kg (30%). To help achieve the EU’s goal of keeping global warming under 1.5°C, each resident should aim to reach a personal footprint of 2500kg.

User plans also encompass a spectrum of lifestyle changes, from small adjustments like embracing repair and recycling practices to more substantial shifts such as reducing travel and adopting plant-based diets. Of the four lifestyle categories tracked in the Lifestyle Test, transportation accounts for the largest portion of emissions (46%), followed by food (24%), then housing (21%), and things and purchases (10%).

PSLifestyle Project Lead Markus Terho of SITRA (Finnish Innovation Fund) explains that:

“Finding ways to live a good life within the limits of the planet, now and in the future, is possible. The Lifestyle Test helps people with what to do differently. We can all find our own way and help others to find theirs. Our choices shape the world!”

The LifestyleTest is created by the PSLifestyle project. PSLifestyle is closing the gap between climate awareness and individual action. PSLifestyle inspires people to adopt positive, sustainable, and healthier lifestyles by helping them to reduce their environmental impact. Join PSLifestyle and help shape visions of positive and better lifestyles.

More information: ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network of more than 2,500 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. ICLEI – Press Release. Featured image credit: Pixabay | Pexels

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