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Generation Y's 'Green' Cred Takes Tumble

Stocks in this article: F BP TM HMC WMT NKE

The millennial generation believes it's the great green hope for saving the environment. But when it comes to understanding the issues, it turns out the young ones aren't nearly as well informed as they think they are, and they're pretty darn impressionable.

I've spent a lot of time looking at corporate employers and all the things they are doing to appear eco-conscious to college and business-school grads who want to work for the good guys and believe a company's environmental credentials matter.

The trouble is, these kids rely a lot on how things seem, and they don't look very closely at how things are, which makes them way less effective than they could be as employees and consumers.

Consider a survey from Adecco: Forty percent of people ages 18 to 34 would be more likely to work for a company that's green, compared with about a third of those 35 and up. Moreover, 65% of these young ones say the company they work for should be doing more than it is about the environment, compared with half of those in the older age groups.

But here's the kicker: Generation Y, those born 1977 to 1995, are the least likely group to actually know about environmental policies in the workplace. Among those whose company has such a policy, only 38 percent of young workers say they know what it is, versus 64 percent of those 55 or older and more than half of 35- to 54-year-olds.

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