The public perception of energy

Depending on which curve of the media bubble you focus on, the apparent public view of our energy and its future can give you some very different results. DECC has set up a tracking survey to understand and monitor public attitudes to the Department’s main business priorities. The first ‘Wave’ of data, collected over 4 days in March, was released last week and shows some surprising and some less surprising results.

The need for an energy mix is something every part of the industry is calling for and so it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that 82% of respondents believe this is important with 40% believing the UK is too reliant on overseas energy.

With economic woes persisting for homeowners and businesses, it is unsurprising that when asked to about a variety of issues; climate change was only considered the biggest concern by 2% of respondents compared with unemployment at the top of the list at 43%.

However, this should not be read as a lack of concern altogether, as 65% said they were ‘very concerned’ or ‘fairly concerned’ about climate change with only 3% believing it to be a myth and 38% believing it to be an entirely human-made issue. This does, however, reflect the change in tone around Westminster that put so well by the Shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary, Caroline Flint when she described the need to focus on “bills not bears”.

The process will be repeated four times a year and will serve as an interesting benchmark for the Department to view its priorities.

More information is available on DECC’s Statistics web page


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