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The Net Impact of Home Energy Feedback Devices

March/April 2010
This article originally appeared in the March/April 2010 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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March 01, 2010
Recently, much attention has been focused on modifying the way individuals interact with energy consuming products in their homes. In order to examine the viability of real-time feedback devices to produce energy savings, Energy Trust of Oregon, piloted a study using the Blueline PowerCost Monitor. Energy Trust manages Oregon’s portion of the public purpose charge for investor-owned electric and gas utilities. The agency manages energy efficiency and renewable energy programs that span residential, commercial, and industrial sectors. Currently, the residential program focuses on retrofit and incremental energy conservation measures, solar energy systems, and also offers free home audits, called Home Energy Reviews (HER). This article details the net impact of the monitor on electricity use for “early adopters” and HER participants. Enter the Monitor Energy Trust began investigating potential products for a home energy monitor (HEM) pilot because of an interest in findings from Canadian utility pilots of instantaneous feedback devices. The agency chose the Blueline PowerCost Monitor because homeowners could install the device themselves. Following product testing, Energy Trust launched a small-scale pilot in January 2008 with installations continuing through August 2008. The pilot tested two delivery mechanisms: self installations by the customer (early adopters), and Home ...

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