Energy efficiency: the missing piece in the Energy Cost Review jigsaw

energy efficiency

Energy efficiency: the missing piece in the Energy Cost Review jigsaw

Blog on energy efficiency written by Joanne Wade posted on the Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE) website on 30 January 2018.

Prof. Nick Eyre, Research Councils’ Energy Demand Research Champion, responds to the Cost of Energy Review.


The exclusion of gas and transport fuels from the Review is odd, given that both of which form major parts of energy costs. However, these remarks follow the review in focusing on electricity.

Energy Efficiency Evidence

The diversity and scale of energy efficiency research evidence far exceeds what can be set out here.  The Research Council funded End Use Energy Demand Centres alone have produced more than 500 outputs in the last 5 years.  In addition, there is relevant evidence from the work of the UK Energy Research Centre and the Tyndall Centre, as well as research by specialist organisations outside universities (e.g. BRE, EST, NEF, ACE and NEA) and evidence commissioned by Government (e.g. the Bonfield Review and the Electricity Demand Reduction project).  It appears that none of this has informed the Review.

Energy Efficiency: the dominant driver of cost reduction

Energy bills, in commodity driven tariff structures, are the product of unit price and demand.  Even with more complex tariffs in future, energy costs will remain a function of supply price and energy demand.

Historically, energy prices have fluctuated, but energy efficiency has improved monotonically.  Over any significant historical period energy efficiency has therefore been the dominant driver of cost reduction.  UK final energy demand is now lower than in 1970, and 15% below the peak demand year of 2004, despite huge growth in economic activity and energy service demand in the intervening years.  This is due to energy efficiency.  It is widely accepted that this reduction trend will need to accelerate if energy policy goals are to be met.  The Committee on Climate Change projects a 25% energy efficiency improvement in the years 2014-2030 (1)…

A full copy of the blog piece is available on the Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE) website.

A brief overview of all the End Use Energy Demand Centres (EUED) Centres.