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The Wrench in the Works: Household Behavior and Why Energy Efficient Buildings are not Enough
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Technology and Social Change. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. (Program Energisystem)
2012 (English)In: 2012 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficincy in Buildings: Fueling Our Future with Efficiency, Washington, D.C., 2012Conference paper, Presentation (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In many countries around the world there is a shift towards constructing more energy efficient buildings. Research shows that the buildings have better energy performance but still are not reaching the overall targets of reduced energy consumption. Household electricity use in low energy buildings is similar to that in conventional buildings. If the buildings are getting better, then what is missing from the equation? The aim of this study is to introduce a model called energy order which can be used to analyze how people living in low energy buildings actually conduct their everyday activities. A more specific objective is to look at the use of household appliances and their role in everyday life.

Interviews have been conducted with people living in low energy apartments classified as passive houses. The passive house concept focuses on a tight building envelope, appliances and people’s activities in the home as important means of maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature. The interviews concentrate on the use of household appliances, in particular white goods. Results show that reducing energy consumption is usually not a priority in the households studied, and hence low energy buildings are not as successful energy wise as anticipated. The main reason is that the household members rarely think actively about lowering energy consumption and thus fail to recognize their own role in the system. Also, various restrictions prevent people in these households from making better energy choices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Washington, D.C., 2012.
Keyword [en]
Behavior & Human Dimensions, Electricity, Laundry, Multi-Family Homes
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-81103OAI: diva2:550456
ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings
Available from: 2012-09-27 Created: 2012-09-07 Last updated: 2012-09-27Bibliographically approved

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Karresand, Helena
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