Evaluation of Thai Appliance Labeling Program

This project evaluated the Thai appliance energy labeling program and compared the U. S. and Thai consumer energy behaviors and appliance labeling.

This was also the first detailed evaluation of the Thai DSM programs. It revealed that after just three years of implementation, the Thai appliance labeling program had a significantly greater impact on the consumer appliance market than the then 20-year-old U.S. program. More than 60% of Thai consumers asked about or looked at the label against only 20% of consumers in the US. Energy efficiency was reportedly among the top-three purchase priorities for 28% of Thai appliance consumers, compared to just 11% of U.S. consumers.

The project showed that salespeople played a significant role in both appliance labeling programs and influenced at least 50 percent of appliance sales. In some instances, the incentives they earned motivated them to sell appliances that had additional features and used more energy. Finally, the project likewise revealed that U.S. and Thai policymakers had different objectives for their appliance labeling programs. The U.S. program sought to provide consumers with information that would assist them in their appliance purchase decisions. In contrast, the Thai program’s objective was clearly behavioral and sought to persuade consumers to buy a more efficient appliance that would save money and protect the environment. To support the program, the Thai government implemented a massive, nationwide advertising campaign.

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