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Consumers More Willing to Buy from Brands Using Renewable Energy

Sixty two percent of consumers surveyed said they would be more willing to buy products from brands using wind energy, according to a study commissioned by turbine maker Vestas.

The Global Consumer Wind Study 2012, an annual survey produced by TNS Gallup, also showed that 79 percent of consumers prefer renewable energy and 45 percent perceive climate change as one of the top three challenges facing the world today.

The report, carried out in May, surveyed 24,000 consumers from 20 counties. It also includes 32 brands: Adidas, Apple, BMW, Carlsberg, Coca-Cola, Danone, Disney, Ferrero Nutella, Gap, Google, Heineken, Honda, HP, Ikea, Lego, L’Oreal, McDonalds, Microsoft, Nestlé, Nike, Nissan, Nokia, Pepsi, Puma, Sony, Starbucks, Tesco, Toyota, UPS, VW, Walmart and Zara.

The survey asked consumers to answer specific questions about these global brands, with each respondent being asked about one brand.

The study found 74 percent of the respondents believe companies can positively affect how consumers perceive their brand by switching to wind energy. Twenty eight percent said they would get a “much more positive” perception if the surveyed brands’ products were manufactured using wind energy. Vestas says these findings show an opportunity for companies to increase consumers’ brand perception by using wind energy as their primary electricity source.

The automotive industry has the highest average score, according to the study, with 39 percent of consumers surveyed about an automotive brand saying they view the brand as climate-friendly (see chart) as opposed to 28 percent who do not. According to Vestas, this shows the auto industry has been more successful than other sectors in creating a climate-friendly profile.

The food and beverages industry, on the other hand, has the lowest score, with 30 percent of consumers saying they find food and beverage brands climate friendly and 29 percent saying they do not.

This year more than 300 companies have disclosed their use of energy for the 2012 edition of the Corporate Renewable Energy Index, commissioned by Vestas in partnership with Bloomberg New Energy Finance. This is a 200 percent increase in participation compared to 2011.

According to Vestas, this shows companies are taking a greater interest in creating transparency. It says companies are also taking action and increasing their use of renewable energy and investing directly in renewable energy projects.

Last month, the US reached the 50 GW milestone in terms of wind energy capacity installed, according to the American Wind Energy Association.

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