SustainabilityConsumers want more speed and transparency in energy transition

The digital association Bitkom published today the results of a representative survey among German consumers on their attitudes towards the energy transition. According to the results, the pace of the energy transition is too slow for 71 percent of Germans. Another 79 percent consciously want to use less energy but often don't know how.

For this purpose, Bitkom Research on behalf of the digital association Bitkom surveyed a total of 1,002 people in Germany aged 65 and above between January and February 2022 about their views on the energy transition.

These are further insights:

  • The vast majority of 81 percent of the respondents support the energy transition from fossil fuels such as oil and gas and nuclear energy to wind or solar energy. However, 71 percent rate the pace as too slow and only 19 percent as just right. For 72 percent, the energy transition cannot be managed without digital technologies.
  • 79 percent of German consumers said they consciously wanted to consume less energy, but many lacked the necessary information to do so. For example, 40 percent did not know the amount of their annual electricity consumption and 30 percent could not quantify the amount of their monthly energy bills.
  • Respondents wanted more transparency on the electricity consumption of individual appliances (71 percent), specific information on the electricity consumption of individual household appliances to identify electricity guzzlers (65 percent), individual behavior-based information on how to save electricity (60 percent) and details on the CO2 emissions of their own energy consumption (54 percent).
  • Consumers also wanted more transparency when it came to heating, for example via seals or labels that show the energy efficiency of their heating (75 percent), through smart meters that show how much energy the heating is using in real time (68 percent) or by transmitting their anonymized consumption data to providers that process heating bills (59 percent).
  • Smart meters (i.e. digital and connected measuring devices for heat or electricity that automatically transmit consumption to providers) are becoming increasingly common among consumers: Only 33 percent did not know anything about this technology – that is nine percent less than in 2020.
  • 60 percent of respondents are calling for the roll-out of smart meters in Germany to be accelerated, and 48 percent think that energy-saving smart home technologies should receive more government support.

Matthias Hartmann, member of the Bitkom Executive Committee, commented: "People in Germany want to actively support the energy transition. The war in Ukraine has made many people even more aware of the need to save energy in order to become less dependent on Russian oil and gas imports. Now the focus is on information, practical assistance and financial incentives. Smart meters can measure consumption in real time and recognize at what time of day we use what amount of electricity. Smart meters provide clarity in the jungle of domestic energy consumers. Smart meters bring intelligence to the grids and are central to a successful energy transition. Germany must quickly create incentives to accelerate the rollout, for example through funding programs, less bureaucracy, cost-efficient solutions and realistic technical standards."

Source: Bitkom

More information, graphic on smart meters and on electricity consumption