A Brisbane digital initiative ‘Reduce Your Juice’ could enable households to reduce their power bills by up to 20 per cent.
Reduce Your Juice, which was the brainchild of Brisbane City Council’s sustainable agency CitySmart, uses an interactive mobile gaming app in conjunction with social media, email and SMS to guide energy saving behaviour.
The first trial involved over 1,000 young adult renters on low income, who can on average spend around 10 per cent of their weekly income on power bills.
Initial results from the trials conducted showed power bill savings of more than 18 per cent.
“We’re very encouraged by the preliminary findings that show a substantial impact on household power usage in our target market and while there is still some way to go before the trials and results are finalised, I think the early signs suggest we have taken the correct approach – using the latest behavioural research to create an unconventional and incentive approach to tackle a costly issue for householders in today’s digital generation,” CitySmart Chief Executive Neil Horrocks said.
The initiative won the Best Residential Energy Efficiency Project award at the National Energy Efficiency Awards.
Energy Efficiency Council Chief Executive Luke Menzel applauded the initiative and its ability to overcome the challenge of researching young adult renters.
“This group is notoriously hard to engage with. The judges were extremely impressed by the behavioural change achieved in some of Queensland’s most marginalised communities,” Mr Menzel said.
“Reduce Your Juice is a cutting-edge program that shows how we can promote sustainability outcomes using the tools of the 21st century. Brisbane is leading the way on this one, and it deserves to be emulated around Australia,” he added.
Trials of the program have now been completed, with an initial set of results expected to be released in December and the full report due in February 2016.