Reducing power usage – keeping up with the Joneses trumps melting icecaps
Energy Australia revealed that knowing a neighbours household’s energy consumption triggers a more proactive response from customers than ecological warnings. The finding comes from a recent review of Energy Australia’s NSW operations given to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART).
Adrian Merrick, Energy Australia’s Group Executive Manager Retail said that this is based on the data collected from customer participation in the company’s MyEnergyReport scheme. Part of a range of incentives introduced by the company to encourage more sensible energy consumption, Merrick said that the scheme resulted in a downward shift in overall household energy use.
Offering customers an option to compare their own consumptions to that of their neighbour’s had “a sort of keeping up with the Joneses effect” according to Merrick. “That has a much greater impact on how people think about energy and how they use their energy than if we just keep bombarding them with images of melting icecaps,” he added.
The optional scheme is available to residential customers of EnergyAustralia. Those who sign up for MyEnergyReport get regular updates on their home’s energy use compared to other homes of similar size, type, and heating and cooling features. A household’s periodic energy consumption especially across seasons, aside from energy saving suggestions, rebates, and special programs, is also included in the report. More information on MyEnergyReport is available from their FAQ page.
Designed for customers to understand their consumption, the company aims that this will eventually encourage people to save energy and achieve the bottomline of reduced energy costs
photo credit: visitgreenland