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Survey: Oulu inhabitants interested in low-energy and climate-friendly solutions

A house with solar panels on the roof and an electric vehicle being charged, illustration.

One of the aims of the Making City project is to increase debate on energy efficiency and encourage residents for energy saving.

Last spring, a survey of Oulu inhabitants was conducted to gauge their views on issues such as energy consumption habits as well as environmental impacts and how to mitigate them. The survey results suggest the most important way to affect the climate impact of electricity and energy consumption are industry, business, and state and local government decision-making, but action byindividual inhabitants may also matter.

The vast majority of respondents try to make energy consumption choices to affect the environment. 95% of the respondents consider some degree of environmental friendliness as a selection criterion in their personal choices. The respondents also reported paying attention to saving energy in their everyday lives. Nearly every respondent said they turned off the lights as they left home, two thirds of the respondents made low energy purchase, and more than half had cut down on the use of warm water or lowered indoor temperatures.

The respondents said their homes had some smart functions to monitor or optimize electricity consumption. These smart features affected heating, lighting, air conditioning or vehicle heating. One of the aims of the Making City project is to arouse conversation on energy efficiency and encourage the residents to monitor and optimize their consumption habits.

In order to promote awareness of energy issues and change consumption habits, the respondents would like to have comparative data with other households and more detailed breakdowns of the composition of their own energy consumption. To promote energy efficiency, inhabitants expect advice and recommendations for energy-saving habits and actions as well as for reducing material consumption.

The survey was carried out by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland as part of the Making City project that is based on the Oulu City Strategy 2026 and its environmental programme, supports their energy and materials efficiency goals, and promotes the city’s carbon neutrality objective.

More information about the Making City project available online (in Finnish): www.ouka.fi/kaukovainio.