A recent survey shows more consumers now recognize the Energy Star®  label and associate it with energy savings. According to a survey done by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency  (CEE) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency  (EPA), 83 percent of respondents recognized the Energy Star label when they saw it, which was a statistically significant increase over 2009 and a 45 percent increase over the past 10 years. In addition, 64 percent of households associated the Energy Star label with efficiency or energy savings.
CEE Strategic Communications Director Sarah Griffith says there is a strong correlation between Energy Star awareness and local efficiency programs, such as rebates offered by utilities companies. In addition, Julie Caracino, CEE Program Manager of Evaluation and Research, says that over the past several years, the discrepancy between areas they deem high or low publicity has diminished.
“This is the eleventh year we’ve done the survey, and we’ve seen the gap in consumer recognition and understanding of the label gradually decrease between high and low publicity areas,” Caracino says. “There are still differences, and the CEE member efforts to promote the label are paying off and we’re seeing significant differences in areas where there’s been a local promotion instead of just federal stimulus money.”
Survey data showed that in areas with two or more years of consistent local promotion, 76 percent of households recognized the label without being shown it, compared to 68 percent in other areas.
As far as purchasing Energy Star products, 43 percent of households knowingly bought an Energy Star-labeled product in the past 12 months, and nearly 80 percent of those households said they were likely to recommend Energy Star products to others.
There’s always room for improvement, Griffith says, such as letting consumers know that Energy Star labels are not just for large appliances, but for 60 categories of products, including light bulbs and lighting fixtures.
“There’s always room for more awareness, and what the EPA is focused on is customer loyalty, and making sure when people buy an Energy Star product, it performs as advertised,” Griffith says.
More information on the results is available on the CEE’s evaluation page .