The cheapest energy is the energy you don’t use

In a report issued by Carbon Brief, and widely reported on the BBC, attention has been drawn to the importance of reducing energy demand and not just to focus on low carbon generation. 

The report illustrates the impact of moving towards saving potential by focussing on the introduction of LED lighting, fridges, vacuum cleaners and other appliances which has reduced energy UK consumption per capita down to 1984 levels (around 5 megawatt hours per capita), from a peak in 2005.

The report states that the use of renewables reduced fossil fuel energy by the equivalent of 95 terawatt hours (TWh) since 2005. Whilst focused on energy efficiency measures, many of which are recommended in an energy performance certificate,  energy demand has been cut by an even more impressive 103 TWh.

The report is in line with the UN’s climate body which has energy efficiency as a major policy objective.

Elmhurst’s Martyn Reed commented that  “it is important that this report is not seen as a criticism of government policy to de-carbonise the generation of power and investment in renewables, but instead as a welcome reminder that reducing demand by saving energy is often the cheapest, easiest and most suitable solution. To adapt a well-known phrase “the lowest carbon energy is the energy that you don’t use.”

To read the full BBC article clock here

Carbon Brief are a UK-based website covering the latest developments in climate science, climate policy and energy policy, for more information click here

Article Published: 3rd January 2019

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