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Survey study on energy use in UK homes during Covid-19

Huebner, GM; Watson, NE; Direk, K; McKenna, E; Webborn, E; Hollick, F; Elam, S; (2021) Survey study on energy use in UK homes during Covid-19. Buildings and Cities , 2 (1) pp. 952-969. 10.5334/bc.162. Green open access

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Abstract

To contain the spread of Covid-19, governments across the world imposed partial or complete lockdowns. National energy demand decreased in periods of lockdowns; however, as people spent more time at home, residential energy use likely increased. This paper reports the results of a UK survey study (N = 1016 participants) about their energy-use practices during the first lockdown in March 2020. The results indicated that self-reported heating behaviours did not substantially change during lockdown. Regarding appliance use, in particular the duration of usage for televisions and computing equipment has increased and has spread more over the day. Being less able to manage financially was correlated with a greater usage of the smart meter in-home display and a greater attempt to save energy was positively correlated with greater usage of the in-home display, though correlations were small. In summary, the results indicate that home energy-use behaviours, in particular around heating, did not change as much as might have been expected, which might at least partly be explained by the comparatively warm weather during the first lockdown. Corroborating the survey findings with actual energy data is the next essential step to understand findings in more detail.

Type: Article
Title: Survey study on energy use in UK homes during Covid-19
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.5334/bc.162
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.5334/bc.162
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: appliance use, Covid-19, energy data, energy demand, heating, homes, lockdown, smart meter, survey study, UK
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science > Population Science and Experimental Medicine > MRC Unit for Lifelong Hlth and Ageing
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10142344
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