The Shelton Group just published results of a January 2009 telephone survey of 500 people, and the basic idea is this: Consumers are more interested in saving money than they are in saving the planet. When asked why they would consider buying energy-efficient products, 71% said they would do it to save money, 55% to save the environment, and 49% to protect the quality of life for future generations. With the economy as it is, the results aren't surprising, but in prior years, consumers actually said they were primarily interested in saving the environment.
Those consumers, though, they sure can flip flop — there's probably nothing worse than a consumer with no scruples, so maybe we'll see a return to earthly altruism in the future. While we're waiting, here's what else the study found:
After learning they would save money over the long term, consumers indicated they would likely invest in some of the following energy-efficient measures:
- 44% would buy a programmable thermostat;
- 43% would install insulation in their homes; and
- 42% would install a high-efficiency water heater.
With regard to green actions or behaviors, consumers are doing some of the following:
- 73% turn off lights, unplug things, turn off power strips;
- 71% adjust thermostat/hot water setting to save energy;
- 57% replace incandescent lights with CFLs;
- 57% buy Energy Star appliances and equipment; and
- 52% complete energy-efficient home renovations.
But watch out, consumers aren't so good with some of the following:
- 13% install natural, indigenous, and low-water landscaping;
- 10% telecommute to work;
- 9% participate in the utility's green power program; and
- 6% buy carbon offsets for plan trips or for home.
[=] Utility Pulse 2009 [PDF] at The Shelton Group.