Pier research shows more work is needed to highlight local energy projects to young people in East Anglia

We surveyed 250 young people in East Anglia to get their views

Our renewable energy research highlights that despite a remarkable 97% of the 15-20-year-old respondents expressing support for renewable energy initiatives in East Anglia, an alarming 66% remain unaware of such projects in their local area.

Pier’s renewables team members, Olivia and Sophie, conducted the survey, which received 250 responses, during the Norfolk Chamber of Commerce’s Festival of Knowledge careers fair in collaboration with EEEGR (East of England Energy Group) supported by National Grid.

While the majority of respondents backed renewable energy, only 34% claimed awareness of local projects. Even more striking, out of those aware, none were able to identify specific projects, with 45 mentions limited to generic terms like “wind turbines” and “solar farms”.

The renewable energy research also delved into the media consumption habits of the respondents. Surprisingly, only 38% reported they had viewed content related to renewable energy, with social media emerging as the primary source of information.

Traditional media channels, such as newspapers, were hardly mentioned, reflecting the evolving media landscape for this age group effecting the way information is shared. This highlights that the renewables industry needs to consider how to communicate effectively with young people about local projects.

Kate Bowden Smith, CEO of Pier, said “The team’s findings highlight the need for increased education and awareness initiatives to bridge the gap between youth support for renewable energy and their understanding of local projects.    

“As East Anglia’s renewable energy continues to grow, building greater awareness among the next generation becomes a priority in ensuring sustainable progress. A lot of great work is already being done by EEEGR’s Skills for Energy and it’s great to see some developers engaging directly with local schools and colleges. These results show now is the time to engage with these young people to capitalise on their support for renewable energy projects and to inspire them to want to work in the renewables sector.”

Have you heard of Pier? We’re an award-winning integrated communications agency that specialises in renewables. Clients include RWE, Low Carbon, GEV, British Solar Renewables (BSR) Energy, SP Energy Networks, ORE Catapult, Freeport East and Roadnight Taylor. We’re based in Suffolk, but we have teams in Edinburgh, and London. Pier has a core focus on sustainability and we donate 1% of profit to fighting climate change. We are very proud to have been named PR Consultancy of the Year at our regional CIPR PRide Awards last year.

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