Consumers Willing to Open Their Wallets to Go Green

Environmentally friendly products from appliances to dry cleaning are all the rage these days. But one issue has remained less clear, at least in the tech business: Are consumers willing to pay more for energy-efficient consumer electronics?

According to a telephone survey of 1002 U.S. adults in March that was commissioned by Sharp Electronics, it appears they are. It found that Americans are three times more likely to pay more up front for a product that saves on their electricity bills in the long run than they are to purchase the less expensive product now.

That’s not to say their budgets are unlimited as far as spending on green products. Some 72 percent of respondents said they are much more inclined to choose an energy-saving product if cost is not an issue.

Bob Scaglione, a senior vice president at Sharp, says the results surprised him. “We had our own feelings that consumers generally were not willing to pay extra when they are standing in front of the product ready to buy. That is why we haven’t charged more,” he says.

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