Public worries over energy bills at all time low

Worries over energy bills are at their lowest point since 2012. That’s according to the latest version of BEIS’ Public Attitude Tracker (PAT), which is now on its 20th wave of […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Worries over energy bills are at their lowest point since 2012.

That’s according to the latest version of BEIS’ Public Attitude Tracker (PAT), which is now on its 20th wave of finding out what the public think about a variety of energy issues.

Currently, only a fifth of people are either “very or fairly worried” about energy bills. Most of these people are middle aged, relatively poor and privately renting their accommodation.

A massive 95% said they were more worried about other household expenses than their power bill.

In terms of energy conservation, just under a quarter claimed to give a lot of thought to saving energy at home (23%), whilst half claimed to give it a fair amount of thought (52%).

Support for renewables has generally been consistently high since the survey began in 2012, at around 75%-80%. However, there has been a small drop in the level of support from 79% in wave 19 to 74% in wave 20.

Public opinion on nuclear power is becoming increasingly apathetic, with the group that neither support or oppose it at a record high of 42%. A third said they supported nuclear energy (36%), while a fifth are opposed (20%).

In contrast, more people were opposed (31%) to fracking than supported it (18%).

The most common reasons for supporting fracking were reducing dependency from other countries (33%), using all available energy sources (27%) and reducing dependency on dirty fossil fuels (27%).

The most common reason for opposing fracking was the loss or destruction of natural environment (58%). The other main reasons were worries regarding water contamination (27%) and that it is too much of an unknown entity to support yet (23%).