Unfolding next generation demand-side information (DSI) models for energy bills
In Switzerland, most of the energy related information available on the energy bills corresponds to the minimum legal requirements imposed by national regulations. Consequently, Swiss bills are often very similar in terms of contents and presentation with a table of data. They barely never include a benchmark against which the household consumption could be compared.
This lack of information does not help consumers to evaluate their level of energy consumption and makes an energy bill not particularly supportive of behavior change to reduce, for the same comfort, their energy needs, which is required to achieve the Energy Strategy 2050 set by the Swiss Federal Council.
The aim of the IMPROVE project was to collect and identify best practices in Swiss and foreign energy bills, to develop different energy bill’s layouts and to evaluate consumers’ and utilities’ interest to receive and implement possible enhancement to energy bills. To achieve this goal, several activities were conducted such as a literature review, collecting and analyzing 91 bills from Swiss utilities and 175 from foreign utilities, or undertaking interviews and workshops with some Swiss utilities. Based on the findings different proposals of energy bill enhancements were developed.
Then a first national survey was conducted to analyse the Swiss energy consumers’ perception of their current energy bill and to gauge their interest to receive additional energy related information on their bill and their acceptance of the proposed energy bill’s layouts. A second national survey was conducted to assess utilities’ interest and the advantages and drawbacks (cost, data availability, etc.) to implement each of the enhanced energy bill’s layouts designed during the IMPROVE project.
Finally, a list of recommendations was elaborated, taking into account insights and suggestions from both customers and utilities, indicating possible pathways for a large scale assessment of their efficiency as an energy saving measure.