Energy Star

Demand Growth and the New Normal

Five forces are putting the squeeze on electricity consumption.

It’s tempting to attribute the recent slowdown in electricity demand growth entirely to the Great Recession, but consumption growth rates have been declining for at least 50 years. The new normal rate of demand growth likely will be about half of its historic value, with demand rising by less than 1 percent per year. This market plateau calls for a new utility strategy.

Efficiency Beyond the Low Fruit

Continuous improvement requires changing practices and cultural norms.

As efficiency programs mature, utilities and regulators will be challenged to keep producing demand-side resources. A systems-oriented approach can yield cost-effective results.