Utility Green Pricing Programs: A Statistical Analysis of Program Effectiveness

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Utility green pricing programs represent one way in which consumers can voluntarily support the development of renewable energy. Such programs have grown in number in recent years. The design features and effectiveness of these programs varies considerably, however, leading a variety of stakeholders to suggest specific marketing and program design features that might improve customer response and renewable energy sales. This report analyzes actual utility green pricing program data to provide further insight into which program features might help maximize both customer participation in green pricing programs and the amount of renewable energy purchased by customers in those programs. Statistical analysis is performed on both the residential and non-residential customer segments. Data comes from information gathered through a questionnaire completed for 66 utility green pricing programs in early 2003. The questionnaire specifically gathered data on residential and non-residential participation, amount of renewable energy sold, program length, the type of renewable supply used, program price/cost premiums, types of consumer research and program evaluation performed, different sign-up options available, program marketing efforts, and ancillary benefits offered to participants.

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