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Enhanced understanding of energy ratepayers: Factors influencing perceptions of government energy efficiency subsidies and utility alternative energy use


  • Craig, Christopher A.
  • Allen, Myria W.


This study explores factors related to energy consumers' perceptions of government subsidies for utility provided energy efficiency (EE) programs and for utility providers' use of more clean/alternative energy sources. Demographic factors, attitudes, planned purchases, and perceptions of utility provider motives in relation to governmental and utility provider EE initiatives (i.e. providing discounts and coupons for CFL bulbs), plus the influence of gain- and loss-framed messages are investigated. Over 2000 respondents completed a 16 item phone survey. Hierarchical regression explained 38% of the variance in reactions regarding government subsidies of the cost of utility provided EE programs and 43% of the variance in perceptions involving whether utility companies should use of more clean or alternative forms of energy. Gender and party differences emerged. Loss-framed messages were more important when the issue was government subsidies. Both gain- and loss-framed messages were important when clean/alternative energy was the issue.

Suggested Citation

  • Craig, Christopher A. & Allen, Myria W., 2014. "Enhanced understanding of energy ratepayers: Factors influencing perceptions of government energy efficiency subsidies and utility alternative energy use," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 224-233.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:66:y:2014:i:c:p:224-233
    DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2013.10.074

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Nie, Pu-yan & Yang, Yong-cong & Chen, You-hua & Wang, Zhao-hui, 2016. "How to subsidize energy efficiency under duopoly efficiently?," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 175(C), pages 31-39.
    2. Craig, Christopher A. & Feng, Song, 2017. "Exploring utility organization electricity generation, residential electricity consumption, and energy efficiency: A climatic approach," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 185(P1), pages 779-790.
    3. Craig, Christopher A., 2016. "Energy consumption, energy efficiency, and consumer perceptions: A case study for the Southeast United States," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 165(C), pages 660-669.
    4. Craig, Christopher A. & Feng, Song, 2016. "An examination of electricity generation by utility organizations in the Southeast United States," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 116(P1), pages 601-608.
    5. Craig, Christopher A. & Allen, Myria W., 2015. "The impact of curriculum-based learning on environmental literacy and energy consumption with implications for policy," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 41-49.


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