April 5, 2013

Washington, DC—Results from the National Awareness of ENERGY STAR® for 2012 are now available. Analysis of the data from a Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) household survey, the report shows the strength of the ENERGY STAR brand by measuring label recognition, understanding, and influence on purchasing decisions. Consistent adherence to the brand tenets by EPA and DOE and long-term brand promotion by members of CEE and trade allies has paid off. Eighty-seven percent of households recognized the ENERGY STAR label when they saw it—a 46 percent increase since CEE first conducted the survey in 2000.

"Once again, the results show that Americans understand and knowingly take advantage of the ENERGY STAR label,” observed Hilary Forster, the senior program manager of Evaluation, Research and Behavior at CEE. “The efforts of efficiency program administrators to promote ENERGY STAR have a continued impact, and CEE members are proud to continue this research.”

This year's report presents an analysis by EPA of a survey commissioned by CEE, a nonprofit organization of energy efficiency program administrators. Program administrators are important stakeholders in ENERGY STAR because they promote efficiency in twenty ENERGY STAR product categories to help achieve reductions in energy use at the local level. Likewise, through local incentives for the purchase of ENERGY STAR labeled products, efficiency programs help ENERGY STAR achieve its goal of lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

Highlights of the Report

The report shows that the majority of American households recognize and understand the ENERGY STAR label. Seventy-four percent of all households recognized the label without seeing it. Similar to last year's findings, 64 percent of households associate the ENERGY STAR label with "efficiency or energy savings." Forty-one percent of households knowingly purchased an ENERGY STAR labeled product in the past 12 months, and of those, the majority are likely to recommend an ENERGY STAR product to others.

The value of the ENERGY STAR program has been built over time through a combination of publicity generated by CEE members, other stakeholders, and ENERGY STAR itself. Efficiency program administrators in particular helped propel the growth of ENERGY STAR through their local messaging and promotions. This one-two punch of national and local promotion has created an audience that recognizes the label, understands its meaning, and demonstrates loyalty to the label. All these activities give the ENERGY STAR brand tremendous marketplace clout.

About the ENERGY STAR Survey

For thirteen years, CEE has fielded the ENERGY STAR survey to collect national data on consumer recognition, understanding, and purchasing influence of the ENERGY STAR label, as well as on messaging and product purchases. This information provides critical evidence about the effectiveness of supporting ENERGY STAR at the national level. Additionally, CEE members may choose to supplement the survey to assess ENERGY STAR awareness in their own service areas.


ENERGY STAR was introduced by EPA in 1992 as a voluntary, market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants associated with energy use. Today, the ENERGY STAR label can be found on more than 65 product categories as well as on new homes and buildings. Last year alone, Americans, with the help of ENERGY STAR, saved $24 billion on their utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those of 50 million cars. Products, homes, and buildings that have earned the ENERGY STAR label prevent emissions by meeting strict energy efficiency specifications set by the EPA. For more information, go to www.energystar.gov.


Thank you to the following CEE members who sponsored the 2012 survey.

  • Cape Light Compact
  • Connecticut Light & Power
  • GasNetworks, representing Massachusetts member gas utilities
  • Long Island Power Authority
  • National Grid
  • New York State Energy Research and Development Authority
  • Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance
  • Northeast Utilities
  • Pacific Gas and Electric Company
  • Southern California Edison
  • The United Illuminating Company
  • Unitil
  • Western Massachusetts Electric
  • Xcel Energy

About CEE
CEE is an award-winning consortium of efficiency program administrators from the United States and Canada. Members work to unify program approaches across jurisdictions to increase the success of efficiency in markets. By joining forces at CEE, individual electric and gas efficiency programs are able to partner not only with each other, but also with other industries, trade associations, and government agencies. Working together, administrators leverage the effect of their ratepayer funding, exchange information on successful practices and, by doing so, achieve greater energy efficiency for the public good.