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New Article on Green Energy Defaults

White windmills on a field with a rainbow in the background.

The market uptake of renewable energy electricity (REe) needs to be greatly accelerated. This is critical to reach net zero emissions as soon as possible. This article provides new perspectives on the role of ‘Green Energy Defaults’ to promote the purchase of REe, particularly in countries in which market and consumer policy conditions may be less advanced or certain.

The article originates from our Policy Analysis Theme and seeks to improve the understanding and effectiveness of using Green Energy Defaults (GED) in climate and energy policy. A randomized controlled experiment was carried out and the UK was taken as a case study. Compared to previous research efforts, a new analytical framework encompassing econometrics and a comparison of stated and revealed preferences is undertaken. Results challenge most of the existing lab experimental evidence and questions external validity claims. However, significant differential effects are found when preferences are compared, suggesting that GED can still influence consumer decision-making in the desired policy direction. However, outcomes are likely to be context-specific so policy generalisations are not advisable.

Read the full article (open access) in the Journal of Consumer Policy.