EPRG 0706

David Reiner

2006 EPRG Public Opinion Survey on Energy Security: Policy Preferences and Personal Behaviour

EPRG 0706 Non-Technical Summary | PDF

Abstract: A representative sample of over 1000 UK residents was surveyed for their views on issues ranging from the future of the electricity supply to their current purchasing decisions. Both environment and fuel prices ranked among the top ten issues facing the UK and climate change ranked as the top environmental concern. The young, Liberal Democrats and readers of left-of-centre newspapers such as the Guardian and the Independent, expressed the greatest concern for the environment and global warming. These groups were also least supportive of nuclear power, most supportive of wind power and subsidies for renewables, least trusting of existing market arrangements for electricity, and least concerned about growing dependence on foreign sources of energy. Individual behaviour did not mirror expressed policy preferences. Indeed, political affiliation and newspaper readership had no impact on energy saving behaviour and older respondents, who were least concerned about the environment and global warming, were much more likely to have adopted any measures to reduce energy consumption such as insulating their homes, buying more efficient lightbulbs and more efficient appliances and lowering their thermostats.

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