Energy Saving Day: Fail

Energy Saving Day, designed to encourage people in the UK to save electricity for just one day, has failed to influence a drop in energy consumption.

Energy usage was predicted for a “normal day” by the national grid, who then monitored the actual usage throughout E-Day (6pm 27th Feb to 6pm 28th Feb). The hope was that enough people would commit to saving electricity for the actual usage to come in below the predicted usage. That didn’t happen.

The national grid predicted “normal” usage of 1,042,714MWh (Mega-Watt hours) throughout the day, but the actual demand was 1,043,324MWh, an over-demand of around 0.1%

It’s been a long time since I studied statistics, but I’m sure that 0.1% is far from being a statistically significant amount. So, what was the real outcome of the day? It seems to me that what happened is that nothing changed. People still used the same amount of electricity as normal (with a small, perfectly understandable variance). It seems, on the surface, that people just don’t want to do without their luxuries. After all, if they pay for electricity, why not just use it?

Personally, I would like to see more homes fitted with solar panels and wind turbines. I would be more than happy to contribute to lowering demand on the national grid by generating my own power, but home-generation solutions are outside my price range at the minute. I do try to switch things off when I’m not using them, and avoid leaving appliances in standby mode as far as possible. The thing is, if the e-day figures are to be believed, it makes very little real difference.

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