Building Sustainable Behavior through Social Marketing: Encouraging Reusable Shopping Bag Use at Stadium Thriftway in Tacoma, WA - A Case Study
Laakso, Alysen Kristen
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Strong sustainability represents a paradigm shift that places environmental conservation and social well-being above the economy and hyper-consumption. Building sustainability requires replacing single-use disposables with durable reusables. This thesis focuses on one ubiquitous single-use disposable - grocery store shopping bags. The environmental science demonstrates that single-use shopping bags, both paper and plastic, incur unnecessary environmental costs because there is a more sustainable alternative in reusable bags. However, in order to pass and enforce successful bag regulations, bag legislation proponents have to garner community support and involvement. Therefore, community-based social marketing (CBSM) is examined as a method to build sustainable behavior in communities. In order to assess the merit of CBSM, a case study was performed at a mid-sized grocery store in Tacoma, Washington. The campaign attempted to decrease single-use shopping bag consumption by increasing reusable shopping bag use through the use of CBSM techniques. Ultimately, CBSM proved successful at changing shopping bag habits and increasing sustainable behavior.