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Consumer Feedback Through Informative Electricity Bills

Part of the Sustainability and Innovation book series (SUSTAINABILITY)

In Germany, the household sector is currently the one with the fastest growing end energy consumption. Electricity consumption is rising especially fast. Having a 27% share of total national electricity consumption in 2005, households are now the second biggest electricity consumer after industry. This poses problems for a sustainable energy future: due to high generation and distribution losses, electricity consumption puts a special strain on total primary energy demand. And the latter must come down if renewable energy sources are to contribute substantially to energy supply (Enquête-Kommission 2002; DLR et al. 2004; Velte 2004; DIW et al. 2005, Greenpeace and EREC 2007).

This chapter explores innovative approaches for improving feedback on electricity consumption. It combines a more general discussion based on a literature review with the analysis of an example case, the introduction of informative electricity bills in Germany, specifically by the utility Stadtwerke Heidelberg. The case study builds on evaluation research that has been carried out by the ifeu research institute for the Stadtwerke Heidelberg, which includes a customer survey, and on interviews with utilities. In section 6.2, different design options and their potential impact are discussed. In section 6.3, experience with improved feedback is reviewed in order to assess its sustainability effect. Section 6.4 analyzes the process of implementation of innovative feedback forms. Section 6.5 discusses possibilities for shaping such an innovation and its implementation, using the example of the informative bill.

Keywords

Electricity Consumption Design Option International Energy Agency Electricity Bill Electricity Saving 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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