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Green Space Report reveals Australians spend less time in parks

Green Space Report reveals Australians spend less time in parks
April 27, 2013

The Husqvarna Group's comprehensive Global Green Space Report 2013 reveals that Australians are dissatisfied with the amount of time spent in green space compared to what they spent five years ago.

Husqvarna Group, the world's largest manufacturer of outdoor products, has released a social study of over 4,500 people across nine countries to discover people's relationship with green spaces.

The results are presented in the Global Green Space Report 2013, including the specific results from Australia's 526 participants.

The green disconnect: The amount of time spent in green spaces is decreasing

People all around the world believe green spaces can affect the quality of life (54%). Australians expressed that specifically, plants and green (38%) and nature (54%) are extremely important contributing factors. These results are only beaten by family (77%), and far outweigh sex (28%) and money (26%).

Despite this, Australians aren't getting outside enough with 54% dissatisfied with the amount of time spent in green space compared to what they spent five years ago.

Husqvarna Group General Manager Product Marketing Stephen Clark explained "there is a disconnect between what we know is good for us and what we actually do when it comes to interacting with nature.

"The results indicate that Australians believe spending time in green spaces alleviates stress and anxiety and even aids concentration but the busy nature of life and work seems to get in the way of getting out-even if it's for the sake of kids."

Green is great for kids, but not for busy parents

Despite the low level of visits to outdoor green spaces, parents are determined to reap the benefits of interaction with nature for their kids. The overwhelming majority would like their kids to spend more time (37%) or much more time (37%) in gardens or parks.

Spending time with children in the park is surprisingly uncommon for Aussie parents, with 34% heading outdoors once a week or more. The remaining majority are restricted to limited visits once a month (25%), once during the last three months or more seldom (25%) or never (11%).

Here Clark added "as little as 20 minutes a day of interacting with nature has a measureable positive effect on feeling energised, vital, alert and positive. It even makes us more resilient to physical illness.

"The Global Green Space Report shows that Australians are well aware of the positive outcomes of interacting with nature we just either don't have the time or energy to follow through."

People want to get their hands dirty

Obstacles aside, Australians would love to get closer to nature and dig their educated green thumbs into the soil.

The report suggests that not only are 48% of respondents willing to contribute their time to public green spaces, but Australia's self-rated gardening knowledge is the second highest of all countries surveyed, with the majority of participants claiming to have intermediate (40%) and advanced (32%) knowledge levels. Australians expressed a great desire to contribute this knowledge, their own time and money to help maintain public green spaces.

The Global Green Space Report 2013 by Husqvarna Group is based on 4,676 interviews conducted in nine countries in November 2012.

The population in each country was pre-stratified with regard to age, gender and geography.

The report is available at www.greenspacereport.com 

16th September 2012 - GREEN FLAG AWARD LAUNCHED IN AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND 

27th July 2012 - REPORT HIGHLIGHTS GROWING IMPORTANCE OF URBAN GREEN SPACE

28th December 2011 - FOUNDATION CHIEF URGES AUSTRALIANS TO MAKE THE MOST OF ‘PARKS FOR PEOPLE’

10th May 2011 - PARKS ESSENTIAL FOR HUMAN HEALTH 

16th April 2010 - PARKS A KEY TO PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

27th June 2008 - PARKS FORUM HIGHLIGHTS VALUE OF PARKS


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