flight attendant with eco-mealPay a lot, get a little?Hawaiian AirlinesYesterday I was on New Hampshire Public Radio’s Word of Mouth, and another segment near mine caught my eye. (Ear?) It was about the psychology of green decision-making, pivoting off a Richard Conniff piece on behavioral economics. (Which dropped at the same time as the related New York Times Magazine piece on decision science, but doesn’t seem to be directly connected.) Without getting all wonk-tastic, the idea is that we don’t do green stuff because it’s good for the planet. We do green stuff when we get rewarded, or when we think our peers are doing it.

It’s not all that surprising a concept, I guess, but I still find it fascinating. And I thought of it again today, when I saw these stories:

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  • Yesterday, the Houston Astros offered half-price tickets to fans who took public transportation to the game
  • Hawaiian Airlines is going to start selling a $10 premium meal packaged in biodegradable materials. The other option is a free meal.

Hm, a big discount for a green choice or paying instead of getting something for free … which of these most appeals to the brain?

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