Infographic: The Energy Hungry House

posted by Shannon on March 28th, 2011

infographic: the energy hungry house

The Energy Hungry House

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15 Responses to “Infographic: The Energy Hungry House”

  1. Charles Adams says:

    My company is just starting off in rental real estate and I plan to install solar on all of my properties as I go. My entire purpose is to increase the independence of the average person from the central grid system and save money in the process.

  2. Mark Wiener says:

    From 1982 to 2001 I saw thousands of spec homes built in Texas with no attention to shading, jet black shingles, little insulation, very inefficient windows, low SEER airconditioners and no solar systems at all. Add to these homes swimming pools with minimum 1.5HP pumps. The rental properties in the thousands were and are worse. That is an explosion in energy use!
    VERY DISAPPOINTED INFOGRAPHIC ETC. REALLY FORMS A COMPLAINT RATHER THAN A POSITIVE SOLUTION AND THERE ARE POSITIVE SOLUTIONS THAT INCREASE COMFORT. I have been a solar energy professional since 1979. There is better and it is woefully underpublicized and erroneously presented even by some so called solar advocates.

  3. Dietram Oppelt says:

    HVAC, AC and refrigeration counting for 1/3 of household electricity consumption plus all the high GWP refrigerants !

  4. Michael Vogt says:

    Got a source for the University of Minnesota study you mentioned?

  5. Conrad Johnston says:

    But that’s what you’d expect right? I mean – electrical manufacturers need to sell their products, so we buy more products, and use more power.

  6. Michael Vogt says:

    I’m reading the document on the Red Wing Project (I’m guessing that’s what you meant by the “University of Minnesota study”), and it doesn’t appear to say what you claim it does.

    I’ve only skimmed it, but the study appears to be concerned only with how many ways the _farmer_ will be able to use electricity and how the farmer could make that electricity usage worth the cost. I’ve seen no mention that electric companies would profit by extending electrification to these areas.

    If this is the case, then your comment about the free market is wholly unwarranted.

    Please help me find the relevant part if I’ve missed it:

  7. Randolph Seibold says:

    Really well done! What a good initiative, group solar purchasing. Am going to recommend infographics to an organization trying to motivate climate change adaptation initiatives in BC where I live, using this as an example.

  8. David Llorens says:

    “Despite widespread electricity in cities, by the 1920s electricity was not delivered by power companies to rural areas because of the general belief that the infrastructure costs would not be recouped. In sparsely-populated farmland, there were far fewer houses per mile of installed electric lines. A Minnesota state committee was organized to carry out a study of the costs and benefits of rural electrification. [1] The University of Minnesota Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, working jointly with NSP (now Xcel Energy), conducted an experiment, providing electricity to nine farms in the Red Wing area. Electricity was first delivered on December 24, 1923.[2] The “Red Wing Project” was successful- the power company and the University concluded that rural electrification was economically feasible. The results of the report were influential in the National government’s decision to support rural electrification.”

  9. David Llorens says: “This meant that they had to prove to energy companies that the cost to bring electricity to rural areas was worth it by finding additional uses beyond running water and electric lights.” There are also some great quotes in that article from people who were directly involved with the project, from researchers to farmers.

  10. Dan Barahona says:

    1BOG – you should check out the Jevons Paradox. In England in the 1800s they wanted to increase the lifespan of coal reserves by increasing efficiency. What the efficiency efforts accomplished was to make coal cheaper, and actually increased the overall coal demand. Solar is different. 1BOG leverages buying efficiencies to make solar cheaper/more accessible, and motivates users not to exceed their production.

  11. Liane Burwell says:

    Wow another fascinating factoid from Michael. Thank you. food for thought

  12. Alexander Zwissler says:

    This also makes the point that if we focus on more energy efficiency, particularly in major appliances and home insulation, it can have a material impact on bending the curve of electricity usage growth. Simply turning off lights and putting things on smart power strips, while feeling good, does not have sufficient impact.

  13. Renee Yeager says:

    I thought this was pretty interesting…

  14. Tim Welsh says:

    Great infographic showing where energy consumption goes at home. Some easy things to do to limit your consumption. Also sign-up and maybe you can get a group deal on solar in your neighbourhood. Spread the word!

  15. Ian Sean-Patrick Mitchell says:

    “So much for the wisdom of the free market?”
    Where’s the research proving that rural power consumption was actually high enough to offset building costs? I believe you’d find that we pay in federal agricultural subsidies for nearly every watt of power produced in rural areas, and that without government capital and subsidies a lot of the energy-intensive farming of otherwise unmarketable crops would have never happened.
    More government, more problems.

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Infographic: The Energy Hungry House

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