[FoRK] Electricus - household power usage

Stephen Williams sdw at lig.net
Sat Aug 18 19:51:33 PDT 2012

This would be much more interesting if the baseline costs of heating, cooling, cooking, hot water, and everything else were 
broken down somehow.

  The Globalist Quiz > Global Energy
Olympic Power Houses: Citius, Altius, Fortius ... Electricus? 	

By The Globalist | Saturday, August 04, 2012 	

All eyes are on London for the 2012 Olympics. While thousands of lucky fans have traveled to the British capital to cheer on their favorite athletes, billions more will watch on televisions, computers and mobile devices at home. The Globalist Quiz asks: How much energy does the average Briton consume each year for residential electricity and heat?



A. 2,011 kWh
B. 4,442 kWh
C. 8,424 kWh
D. 15,443 kWh

A. 2,011 kWh is correct

On a per capita basis, each of the roughly 61 million residents of the United Kingdom consumes 2,011 kWh (kilowatt-hours) in electricity for residential usage. That puts Britain in 14th place among the 34 nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The UK's total household consumption in 2009 was 20% higher than the 101,779 GWh of residential electricity consumed that year by Brazil, the scheduled host for the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro. However, Brazil has about three times more inhabitants (194 million). As a result, 2009 residential electricity/heat consumption per capita in Brazil was 526.7 kWh, 74% lower than the UK figure.

B. 4,442 kWh is not correct.

In the United States, residential electricity/heat consumption was approximately 4,442 kWh per person in 2009, the latest year for which comparable international statistics are available. That level of consumption is more than double the amount used in the United Kingdom.

Electricity to run gadgets, heating units, and cooling systems in our homes is an important part of the global energy usage mix. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that households account for 14% of worldwide delivered energy consumption.

C. 8,424 kWh is not correct.

Per capita electricity/heat consumption in New Zealand was 8,424 kWh in 2009. This was the highest figure in the OECD — and well above the comparable figures for developing countries like Brazil. Interestingly, more than 70% of New Zealand's electricity is generated from renewables. Thus, its per capita carbon output is relatively low despite its elevated electricity use.

D. 15,443 kWh is not correct.

Russia eclipses the three other BRIC nations (Brazil, India and China) in terms of residential energy use per capita. At nearly 15,443 kWh, Russia's electricity/heat consumption was nearly 18 times that of China. There, the average person used 866.9 kWh for heat and electrical power at home.

Russia's consumption was much larger still compared to India's — almost 130 times larger, to be precise. The average person in India used only 121 kilowatt hours of energy for electricity and heat generation at home, considerably less than in Brazil or China.

However, if you strip out heat energy consumption due to Russia's harsh winters, the country's per capita residential electricity usage would fall to 879 kWh. That makes it similar to the per capita levels recorded in its Eastern European neighbors Poland (721.7 kWh) and Slovakia (817.2 kWh).

This Globalist Quiz is based on research and calculations by Gernot Wagner and Oluseyi Fayanju of the Environmental Defense Fund.

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