New and affordable technology for providing detailed feedback on household electricity usage presents a host of opportunities for utilities and policy-makers to manage demand. This dissertation examines ways to use these devices to reduce — and shift the timing of — energy use in the residential sector by influencing consumers' behavior. The first portion of the study analyzes the impact of programmable thermostats on energy use, focusing on residents' knowledge of climate control settings in the dwelling. The main portion of the dissertation focuses specifically on the potential for better feedback on electricity usage to reduce household energy consumption. This study also examines how energy consumption devices should display feedback on greenhouse gas emissions from electricity use under a real-time pricing program. Finally, this dissertation explores ways to maximize the effect of feedback by evaluating which appliances may be best suited for appliance-specific feedback.
Table of Contents
Interacting with Home Energy Systems: The Case of Programmable Thermostats and Consumer Awareness
Reducing Demand through Better Feedback
Exploring the Effectiveness of Feedback Mechanisms
Using Feedback to Encourage Load-Shifting
Maximizing the Effectiveness of Feedback
Summary and Conclusions