On the acceptance of sustainable energy systems: Explicit and implicit effects in perceived value
09 / 2003 - 01 / 2009
Hydrogen energy systems are visualized as part of the future sustainable society. For these systems the acceptance by the public is crucial for a nationwide deployment of this new technology. For hydrogen as an energy carrier there may be a disadvantage rooted in the public perception that hydrogen is more dangerous than commonly used fuels such as natural gas or gasoline. This concern cannot be based on the physical properties of hydrogen since studies of methane, gasoline and hydrogen have shown that no fuel is safer than the others in every aspect. However, feelings of risk associated with hydrogen systems, are supposed to be, at least partially, triggered by memories from the past. The project aims to gain a new understanding of the dynamics of emotional reactions to hydrogen technologies, with an emphasis on the inverse relation between feelings of risk and perceived control. The implications of emotional reactions for evaluative judgments, system trust and intentions to use a system will be analyzed. The factors that moderate the dominance of these emotion-based judgments will be further explored. The project will generate guidelines for system design and for the introduction of hydrogen technologies.