Energy efficient products becoming more popular: survey

IANS, October 24, 2011

New Delhi : With the rising cost of fuels and power, the number of people and households using energy efficient products has risen sharply in recent years, a survey by consumer advocacy group CUTS International revealed.

More than 43 percent households are currently using energy efficient products in one form or other. An additional 22 percent are aware of such products but are not using them due to various reasons, the survey said.

Commenting on the survey, CUTS International Secretary General Pradeep Mehta said increasing awareness about energy efficiency was a positive development and would benefit consumers as well as the economy.

However, Mehta observed that despite the increasing levels of awareness, energy efficiency was not a primary criterion for purchasing home appliances.

“Product branding and price are the major factors that get primary importance in a purchase decision. This consideration varies from one product to another but in most of the cases, energy efficiency appears to be a laggard,” Mehta said.

The survey was conducted by the Jaipur-headquartered CUTS International in association with New Delhi-based Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation.

Over 20,000 households covering 20 states, 500 traders and 50 manufacturers of energy efficient home appliances participated in the survey, CUTS International said in a statement.

Out of those consumers who said they are facing problems in shifting to energy efficient products, high cost of appliances is a major barrier for 34 percent of the respondents, while non-availability is an issue for another 21 percent.

An overwhelming number of households, 67 percent, asked for reduction in the price of energy efficient products, either through subsidisation or reduction in the cost of production.

However, a majority of consumers are willing to pay a reasonable premium for using more energy efficient products. More than 56 percent of surveyed households were willing to pay more if products are of good quality and reduce their energy consumption, the survey said.

According to the survey, the Bureau of Energy Efficiency’s labelling programme was becoming popular.

“The Bureau of Energy Efficiency should exploit this positive development with some more focused initiatives, including generating more consumer awareness to usher in an era of energy efficiency in India,” Mehta said.

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