Motives to adopt renewable electricity technologies: Evidence from Sweden
Journal article, 2017
The diffusion of renewable electricity technologies (RETs) has to speed up for countries to reach their, often ambitious, targets for renewable energy generation. This requires a large number of actors – including individuals, companies and other organizations – to adopt RETs. Policies will most likely be needed to induce adoption, but there is limited knowledge about what motivates RET adoption. The purpose of this paper is to complement and expand the available empirical evidence regarding motives to adopt RETs through a survey to over 600 RET adopters in Sweden. The main finding of the study is that there are many different motives to adopt RETs and that RET adopters are a heterogeneous group with regard to motives. Although environmental concerns, interest in the technology, access to an RE resource and prospects to generate economic revenues are important motives in general, adopters differ with regard to how large importance they attach to the same motive and each adopter can also have several different motives to adopt. There are also differences in motives between adopter categories (especially independent power producers vs. individuals and diversified companies) and between RETs (especially wind power vs. solar power). This implies that a variety of policy instruments might be needed to induce further adoption of a variety of RETs by a variety of adopter categories.