A recent Harris Poll revealed that consumers are taking small steps toward and are enthusiastic about becoming more energy efficient. Some of the highlights from the study include:
However, when it comes to the big changes (and bigger investments), they’re a little more hesitant to jump in feet first.
“In light of rising energy costs and increased pressure to make ends meet, American families are taking simple steps to be more conscientious about how they are using and paying for energy in their own homes. But the challenging economy and the requirement for a large initial investment is limiting how far families might be willing or able to go, steps that involve more expense, like installing solar, wind, smart meters or energy dashboards are not being widely adopted,” said Sarah Simmons, senior research executive and industry thought leader.
It’s been suggested that one of the culprits for this hesitation might be the energy companies themselves.
“Energy companies may need to think more creatively on ways to incentivize consumer behavior toward adoption of more energy efficient solutions,” said Simmons.
According to the Harris Poll research, when asked whether they have been approached by the utility companies regarding Smart Meter technology – a system that would allow individuals to control their home energy use by way of a computerized dashboard – only one in five Americans (21%) say they have.
However, when asked if they would utilize this technology, almost half (48%) say they would be likely to install such a dashboard in their home, even with the understanding that they would have to proactively manage their energy use.
The lesson here: sure, we can guide consumers and instruct them on how to take ownership of their energy use, but unless the resources that are responsible for providing energy are willing to make it a priority, we won’t see the big changes taking place.
We are all accountable for the energy we use and becoming more efficient shouldn’t fall solely in the hands of the consumer. We need to make a commitment to providing a better education on a more in-depth level and to supplying the resources necessary to making more energy-efficient decisions.
If you are a commercial building owner or manager, please give us a call at (888) 729-5722 and let us provide you with a free energy consultation that will outline the steps you can make to drastically reduce your energy consumption and costs.