NEWS: Carbon Calculators Push Energy Consumption Down

Dispatch from SSC Intern Emilia Pramova

A unique study concluded by Oxford University and Ebico in the U.K. just revealed that householders can reduce energy bills by 15% if they can track how much resources they are consuming.

Researchers at Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute (ECI) documented that entering meter readings regularly to a web-based CO2 emissions calculator, called imeasure, makes people more aware of the energy they are using. The study, which tracked the energy habits of more than 1,500 people over 18 months, revealed that these people were more likely to take energy-saving measures.

imeasure users upload their electricity and gas meter readings on a weekly basis. The online calculator then provides an immediate calculation of the household’s carbon dioxide output and money spent on energy. The results can then be compared to other imeasure users so that people can work out whether they are a high, low or typical user of energy.

Ebico – the country’s prominent non-for-profit organization – believes that imeasure may be the answer to controlling household energy consumption before the full roll-out of smart meters can be achieved. Managing Director Phil Levermore declared:

This ongoing study proves that people are willing to make the small changes necessary to reduce their household CO2 emissions. They just need to have a better understanding of how much energy they are using on a weekly basis to make the critical issue of climate change immediately relevant to their lives.