An increasing number of Canadians are using energy and water saving devices at home, but many are not ready to give up pesticides and bottled water, says Statistics Canada.
In 2007, 42 per cent of Canadian households with a thermostat said they had a programmable one, and 84 per cent actually programmed it, Statistics Canada said in its household and the environment survey released Tuesday.
In 1994, only 16 per cent of households with a thermostat had one that was programmable.
We also used more energy-saving compact fluorescent light bulbs in 2007, with 69 per cent of households reporting that they had at least one. This is up from 56 per cent in 2006 and 19 per cent in 1994.
In 2007, 62 per cent of Canadian households said they had a low-flow showerhead, up from 54 per cent the year before.
According to government figures, low-flow showerheads use up to 70 per cent less water than standard showerheads and can save about 15 per cent on the cost of heating the water.
In 2007, 39 per cent of households said they had a low-volume toilet, up from 34 per cent a year earlier. These toilets typically use less than six litres of water per flush, compared with older toilets that can use more than double that.
The environmental picture was more mixed when it came to use of pesticides in 2007.
The number of households using any type of pesticide on their lawn or garden actually increased — from 29 per cent in 2006 to 33 per cent in 2007. However, Statistics Canada cautions that 12 per cent of households said they used organic pesticides.
Pesticide use was highest in the three Prairie provinces and lowest in the Atlantic provinces and Quebec. In Quebec, where strict regulations on pesticide use have been imposed, only four per cent of households used chemical pesticide on their lawn or garden.
While those in the West used more pesticides than anywhere else, they tended to apply them only as needed, says Statistics Canada. In contrast, people in Ontario and Quebec were more likely to apply them as part of a regular maintenance program.
And when it comes to bottled water, it would seem wide-ranging campaigns to convince Canadians that their municipally treated water is safe have not succeeded.
A full 30 per cent of households with municipally supplied water said they drank primarily bottled water in 2007, the same percentage as in 2006.