WHAT'S IN THESE PROJECTS FOR POLICY MAKERS?
Both BRISKEE and CHEETAH are instrumental in giving guidance to policy makers and implementers who need to consider issues related to residential energy efficiency policies. At the core of both projects is an unprecedented and vast set of empirical experimental data from real households – in total more than 30000 households in eight EU countries.
These surveys and the following analysis establish time and risk preferences of European households, based on various segments (such as country, income level, education, age, employment, retirement, size).
The understanding of these preferences can be translated so-called implicit discount rates which are used in modelling energy-demand and macro-economic consequences of various policies. Implicit discount rates used by modellers ere often based on assumptions and scattered sets of empirical data. The BRISKEE and CHEETAH projects take out much of the guess work and instead develop more accurate implicit discount rates based on large sets of empirical research. However, the projects not only help to make modelling more accurate by providing static input of higher quality into models. The understanding of investment behaviour can also help design policies that lowerthe implicit discount rates through effective policies and thus make policies effective and affordable.
The approach in how policy is applied and the differs a bit between the two projects. Thus the projects complement each other.
BRISKEE – Behavourial Response to Investment Risk in Energy Efficiency – investigates preferences of households, such as their approach to risk and the time it takes before an investment pays back, it then follows up with modelling and analyses of policies that address the residential sector. BRISKEE closed in 2017 and all results are available. The key outcomes are briefly summarized on this page, but for more detailed results please see the BRISKEE section.
CHEETAH – behavioural Response to Investment Risk in Energy Efficiency – looks into households in the same eight representative EU countries. However, the vantage point is different: it looks into various external barriers and considers directed policy interventions that can address those external barriers.
Both projects make analysis on three levels.
On the micro-level, i.e., the level of individual households, two large surveys are at the core of each project, in order to gather empirical data from more than 30000 households.
The meso-level analysesmodels household energy demand based on the micro-elvel insights. Here, different policy approaches can be tested to study the outcomes.
Finally, the macro-level analyses looks into the consequences on European GDP, final aggregate demand etc, of these policies.
Some of the outcomes
While BRISKEE is closed and all final analysis ready, CHEETAH is still completing analysis on various levels. However, some conclusions have already been presented. For more detailed description of the outcomes, please see the respective BRISKEE and CHEETAH sections of this web site.
- Both BRISKEE and CHEETAH have shown, empirically, how factors underlying the Implicit Discount Rates (IDRs) are related with energy efficient technology adoption, and how these factors relate to individual and household characteristics. These findings can be used to make policy interventions more effective than just relying on average implicit discount rates.
- Well-designed policies can also lower the implicit discount rates (In practice, speed up technology adoption).
- For those who design residential programmes, the data can help make interventions more effective. BRISKEE has now also opened up the raw data sets and this will also be the case for CHEETAH later.
- Both projects provide a better understanding of how energy-efficient technology adoption is related to low income households across countries.
- BRISKEE modelling using empirically based implicit discount result in lower projected energy demand for the EU than current scenarios.
- However, while the energy demand would be significantly lower, the macro-economic effects are slightly positive up to 2030. More positive macro-economic effects would be realised after 2030.
- The BRISKEE modelling shows that energy efficiency investments have positive impacts on GDP and employment even in conservative (or “classic”) scenarios, however with an actor-related scenario the impacts are even stronger.
Insights for implementation
- Raising the level of energy literacy via education and information programs pays off, espeically for households with low level of energy literacy.
- Rebates for A+++-labelled refrigerators are an effective measure to boost the adoption of A+++-labelled refrigerators in all countries (except the UK)
But: it is more efficient to focus rebates on low-income groups. The cost for rebates is lower per saved kWh if rebates are directed to lowincome households only than for rebates directed to all income groups. From a public spending perspective it is therefore more efficient to target low income households directly (this limits e.g. freerider effects).
- Respondents have more trust in energy providers than in governments.
- Governments can build support for future measures by introducing financial support before the measures take effect.
- Other quality aspects also matter, especially consumer ratings. Communicate positive consumer ratings by peers.
Further reading in the library
- Overall BRISKEE project results and policy recommendations. See report.
- BRISKEE draft policy recommendations (micro- and meso level) See report.
- CHEETAH: Draft report on the policy implications from the CHEETAH micro-level analysis See report.
- CHEETAH: Working paper on energy demand projections for buildings (see report)
- CHEETAH: Adoption of energy efficient technologies by households – Barriers, policies and agent-based modelling studies (see article)
- CHEETAH Working Paper on the role of policies and key factors for household stated adoption of energy-efficient technologies in the EU (see report)
- Changing energy efficiency technology adoption in households - Documentation for first expert workshop (see report)
- Changing energy efficiency technology adoption in households – Working paper on policies (see report)
- Changing energy efficiency technology adoption in households – Working paper on modelling and survey (see report)