Ever feel overwhelmed by all the changes our society needs to make in order to achieve a smooth energy transition? Want to make individual changes yourself, but just can’t seem break certain habits? You’re not alone. Nor is it entirely your fault.
Many societies struggle with getting citizens to make energy-conscious decisions. Indeed, several barriers exist to keep people from making wiser behavioural decisions that reduce their energy consumption. Not only does our energy infrastructure have a long lifespan, but new technologies reducing energy consumption have actually limited the incentives for humans to use less energy. Another reason societies are struggling to see the desired changes among their populations is that top-down interventions such as legislation and regulation have traditionally focused on energy-efficient technologies and renewable energy resources, bypassing the role that humans play in the process. Taking note of this key factor is crucial to success, and policies that encourage sustainable-energy choices could have a significant impact on the energy consumption of a country.
So what can you do? The ENTRUST project serves to guide policymakers and citizens in their approach to the energy transition. By encouraging inclusive, participatory methods, the goal is to obtain policies that will enable citizens to make positive behavioural changes, without feeling like they have lost more than they have gained in the process.
Think about it. Producing one’s own energy is no longer just for the wealthy. Retrofitting one’s home with energy-saving appliances doesn’t have to be a financial and logistical nightmare. Ditching one’s car and taking public transport can actually be a pleasant, convenient experience.
Utilising the methodology proposed in the ENTRUST Policy Toolkit, LGI conducted policy workshops in Paris with energy-concerned citizens. Hailing from several countries around the world, workshop participants generated a wide range of policy recommendations to reduce their energy consumption through transport, buildings, and local energy production.
After reading, let us know what policy recommendations you have. Change will take time, and achieving lasting change will require everyone’s participation. With new year resolutions just around the corner, we can’t think of a better time to start!
For more details visit the ENTRUST website:
The ENTRUST project contributes to an effective transition to a more sustainable energy future by achieving a deep understanding of the social aspects of the energy system. Recognising the importance of escaping the ‘energy as a commodity’ paradigm, ENTRUST develops the concept of energy citizenship as a theoretical lens through which the human factors of the energy system are explored. The project takes an intersectional approach to consider the effects that gender, age and socioeconomic status have for transitioning to low carbon energy system.