26 October 2015

A major update to the 2008 Residential Baseline Study has now been released.

The study into energy use in the Australian and New Zealand residential sectors was undertaken covering the period 2000 to 2030. The study involved the research and development of a model of energy consumption that covered all categories of residential appliances/equipment.

The study examined energy use in total, by end-use and by fuel, and modelled potential maximum residential electricity peak demand during extreme weather events. It did not cover transport fuel use.

A major finding of the study was that total Australian residential energy consumption is declining and has been since 2008. This decline in energy use is due a reduction in the energy use per dwelling, which is mainly a result of improved appliance efficiency and fuel switching.

Projections indicate this decline in consumption will continue for at least five years but that total consumption with then rise in the 2020s, partly because the model assumes no new regulatory driven changes will occur to drive further significant energy efficiency improvements.

The modelling of maximum peak demand indicated national potential peak demand is declining and projections indicate this will not start to increase until the 2020’s.

Modelling also indicated:

  • Electricity is the dominant fuel used, followed by natural gas
  • Space conditioning in 2014 accounted for 40% of residential energy use, followed by appliances at 25% and water heating at 23%
  • Most of the reduction in energy use has occurred in space conditioning and lighting energy use.

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