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14 July, 2021

Adapting behaviours to a 1.5 degree warming world is as crucial as it is difficult. So, when we read Hubbub’s work with BT exploring how technology helped households reduce carbon emissions, we were hooked.   

The two organisations studied how a small and diverse group of people reacted to behaviour change techniques in the context of reducing their carbon impacts. A support group where members could interact with each other, ask questions and support each other is reported to have been a game changer. Same goes for the installation of smart meters. This new tech enabled participants to see and better understand their usage, resulting in clear actions to take and very rewarding savings at the end of the month.  

Overall using simple behaviour change techniques brought overwhelmingly positive results and 76% of the participants confirm that those changes that they made were here to stay. However, the big picture is not so encouraging: if all UK households were to take the same actions, it would only deliver a fraction (6.6%) of what is needed to meet our 2050 Net Zero target.  

So, what’s the point? This study with BT proves that companies can successfully support more sustainable behaviour change through their products. And as much as consumers have a role to play to live more sustainably, evidently our favourite household brands can and must also help us in doing so.  

By Marie Guérinet

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