Energy customers in France get cash bonus for saving power over winter

TotalEnergies said around 1.2 million of its clients qualified for a payout of up to €120 after cutting consumption

TotalEnergies said that clients had to have a Linky meter in order to qualify for the offer, alongside other eligibility conditions
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Households in France will receive bonuses and discounts to reward them for successfully saving energy over the winter.

Energy providers TotalEnergies and Engie announced last year they would offer bonus payments to clients who managed to save power.

EDF also launched a similar scheme, but only for its clients that are members of its Club Oxygène. To qualify, members needed to reduce their consumption by at least 10% compared to the year before.

The aim was not only to save resources but also to avoid the risk of power cuts during a period of low electricity production (mainly due to France’s nuclear power stations being closed for repair but also linked to energy fears linked to the Ukraine war).

Read more: Electricity shortage in France: Will there be power cuts this winter?

Engie said that its ‘Mon Bonus Engie’ scheme aimed to “encourage individuals to drop their consumption on some days, especially to avoid tension on our electrical system”.

The provider said that its initiative had enabled the saving of 2 GWh of electricity over the winter period, which it said was “equivalent to the daily residential consumption of Nice”.

How was the payment worked out?

TotalEnergies specified that it would compare consumption levels to those over the same period the year before. It would then pay between €30-€120 to clients if a reduction was recorded (with a minimum of 5%).

In a press release, the provider said that it is now starting to pay its ‘Bonus Conso’ to “more than 50% of our 2.4 million individual and professional eligible clients who reduced their consumption by more than 5%, the threshold over which you can receive the bonus”.

Of these, 15% will receive an average of €90. Around 25% of households even dropped their consumption by more than 20%, meaning a bonus of €120.

TotalEnergies says this represents a ‘double saving’ for clients, as reducing their consumption will cut their bills anyway - around €100 for reducing consumption by 5,000kWh - plus the €90-€120 reduction, meaning an overall saving of as much as €220.

Who is eligible for the payment?

TotalEnergies said the scheme was only available to clients who had signed up to their contract before the end of 2021, who had been living at the same address since then, and who have a working Linky meter (and reached the threshold of at least 5% savings).

Other clients may receive a voucher of €20-30 “to thank them for their loyalty”, TotalEnergies said.

Engie recorded any drop in consumption compared to the previous year.

For EDF’s Club Oxygène, members needed to reduce their consumption by at least 10% compared to the year before to qualify for the payment.

How will the payment be sent?

For TotalEnergies customers, the money will not be sent via cheque or cash, but will instead be deducted from the next bill.

For Engie customers, each time a drop in consumption was recorded, money was saved in a fund and paid out directly to clients each time the fund exceeded €25. To date, more than €1.3million has been collected for customer benefit, Engie said.

“To date, the gains collected by clients have reached €1,366,000, and much has already been paid to clients,” it said.

Eligible EDF Club Oxygene clients can now receive a gift card of €75, which they can also choose to send to the Fondation Abbé Pierre if they wish to donate it.

EDF said: “Almost half of registered clients reached the aim of dropping their gross average consumption over the period by 27%.”

EDF also stepped up marketing of its ‘Tempo’ offer, which allows customers to benefit from cheaper electricity if they reduce consumption during peak hours and days in the winter.

In one year, between March 2022 and March 2023, a total of 115,000 extra clients had signed up to the offer. This brings the total on the tariff from 200,000 to 315,000, EDF said.

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