Attitudes Toward Energy Conservation: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis1 Academic Article uri icon


  • This study reports a large‐scale survey of citizens' attitudes and beliefs toward energy use and conservation in the southwestern United States. A probability sample of 1,000 Texas residents responded to a 10‐item telephone survey. Questions concerned issues such as thermal comfort and health, economic benefits of conservation, efficacy of individual efforts, and perceived causes of the current U.S. energy situation. Confirmatory factor analysis replicated previous work by Seligman et al. (1979) and Becker et al. (1981) by identifying the same four principal dimensions underlying energy use attitudes and beliefs: 1) comfort and health, 2) high effort‐low payoff, 3) role of individual consumer, and 4) legitimacy of energy problem. In addition, several demographic characteristics were found to moderate consumers' responses to the survey items. The results of this study reinforce the conclusion that future energy conservation campaigns should be sensitive to consumers' concerns about comfort and health. New directions for future research on energy attitudes and conservation behavior are discussed. Copyright © 1991, Wiley Blackwell. All rights reserved

published proceedings

  • Journal of Applied Social Psychology

author list (cited authors)

  • Samuelson, C. D., & Biek, M

citation count

  • 49

complete list of authors

  • Samuelson, Charles D||Biek, Michael

publication date

  • April 1991