The British unit of German power company E.on has made a switch to 100% renewable electricity for its 3.3 million customer households. The company said it made the change in light of growing interest in clean energy among British power consumers.
E.on generates a large proportion of the energy it supplies from its own assets but can also tap supply agreements with independent renewable generators. The company added it can also effectively source clean energy through the use of renewable electricity guarantee certificates. “These certificate guarantee that an equivalent amount of renewable electricity was generated to the amount supplied,” said E.on.
The business explained the switch by referring to a YouGov survey which showed 77% of Britons were concerned about climate change and 79% of respondents said they could do more to be sustainable.
“Climate change is the defining issue of our era, and one that energy customers are increasingly concerned about,” said E.on U.K. chief executive Michael Lewis. “We believe large scale action can make significant change possible and we’re committed to playing a leading role and setting an example for others to follow, that’s why we’re providing all of our residential customers with 100% renewable electricity as standard – a change at a scale never seen before in Britain.”
Customers ready to vote with feet
The survey in question also highlighted 61% of respondents were prepared to change supplier to get onto a clean energy tariff provided the price gap was not too large.
“Our announcement is an important first step in a journey towards a more sustainable and personalized energy system but the future of energy doesn’t stop here,” stated E.on U.K. “The opportunities include helping all of our customers to better manage their energy through smart, personalized and sustainable technologies.”
German parent company E.on is acquiring the Innogy energy network and distribution subsidiary spun out of domestic rival RWE. If approved, a convoluted deal would see RWE retain Innogy’s green electricity assets as well as those of E.on via an asset swap which would see RWE secure a 16.7% stake in its rival. Though the deal has been cleared by the European Commission and the German anti-trust authorities, the scale of the proposed agreement has led the commission to launch an in-depth review of the transaction under EU merger regulations.
A preliminary investigation by the commission concluded the rival energy companies together held a strong position at a national or regional level in the electricity and natural gas retail markets of Germany, Czechia, Slovakia and Hungary.