Here’s a sacrifice to help the environment that just about anybody would be willing to make — work fewer hours. Honestly, that’s it — just take an extra day each week off from work and spend it doing something more pleasurable. The Guardian reports that cutting our work hours by 25% — which equals a day and a quarter — would reduce our carbon footprint by 36 percent. Studies show that the more people work, the more they pollute, while the less they work, they less they pollute. Why? Because shorter work weeks mean that fewer products are produced and fewer hours are logged in on energy-hogging computer and office systems. At the same time, people working a shorter week tend to buy less and use the extra time on low-impact activities, like resting, sports and cultural events.
It’s unquestionably a popular idea. And it has another advantage — people working four days a week expressed more satisfaction with their jobs. It’s not easy to find something that helps the environment, decreases consumption and increases life satisfaction — but a four day work week accomplishes all of this. It definitely sound worth a serious look.