15 March 2021
80% of consumers still heat their homes with fossil fuels but this will need to change as Europe plans to become carbon neutral by 2050. The average lifetime of heating appliances is 15-20 years, so consumers’ purchasing decisions made in the next decade will define not only how consumers heat their homes in 2050, but also the EU’s ability to hit its carbon target.
10 March 2021
Over 30 million Europeans are unable to afford keeping their home adequately warm1 and many more live in inefficient homes. The European Commission’s Renovation Wave Strategy therefore aims to remove the barriers consumers face with energy efficient retrofits through different initiatives, including the revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings and Energy Efficiency Directives later this year.
30 October 2020
Our work areas
Despite many attempts for improvement, the energy market is still a sector of great concern to European consumers as it has many failures: there is concern over complex tariffs, rising prices, poor service or mis-selling, the difficulty of switching and confusion over what consumers can do to lower their bills, including how to be energy efficient.
Access to affordable energy is a real worry for consumers, particularly for vulnerable groups such as those with a low income. Despite the opening of the markets, competition remains limited, restricting consumer choice and driving up prices. Unfair commercial practices such as aggressive doorstep-selling are another source of consumer frustration in the energy market.
‘Smart technologies’ such as smart meters are heralded as the future and they are claimed to offer benefits to consumers. Yet they raise numerous questions about their true potential to deliver real benefits to consumers, as well as risks related to privacy and cost increases.
- Ensure energy is affordable and available to all consumers
- Enable consumers to easily choose between various energy suppliers and switch to the best deal
- Ensure that smart energy systems and other new developments are affordable and designed to benefit consumers