Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation,
Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies

No 388: Residential energy consumption and conservation

Björn Hårsman () and Marie H. Wahlström ()
Additional contact information
Björn Hårsman: CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology, Postal: CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology, SE-100 44 Stockholm, Sweden
Marie H. Wahlström: Department of Urban Planning and Environment, Royal Institute of Technology

Abstract: The Swedish energy performance certificates for single family housing provide rich information on energy consumption and various physical attributes. They also include estimates of the energy conservation potentials resulting from implementing cost-efficient energy saving measures. By matching the certificates issued for single family houses in 2009 and 2010, with data from other sources we have created a unique data-base which can be used to explore a wide variety of questions related to energy consumption and conservation. One aim of this paper is to assess the role for energy consumption played by socio-economic characteristics of the residents as compared to physical attributes of the house. Another is to estimate the influence of housing attributes and climate on the “engineering estimates” of the conservation potentials and analyze to what extent the two estimated relationships are consistent. Our results show that while the quantitative impact of physical attributes dominate the energy use for heating and cooling, the opposite holds for the consumption of household electricity. The assessed conservation potential, amounting to 15 percent of the energy consumption, is significantly related to both the housing attributes and the energy consumption. The results also indicate a need to improve the information provided by the performance certificates.

Keywords: Energy consumption; Energy conservation; Single family housing; Energy performance certificates; Household characteristics

JEL-codes: D12; Q28; R31

28 pages, December 18, 2014

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