Home Automation, IoT Could Cut Energy Consumption 10 Percent, says CTA Study – Business Wire (press release)

ARLINGTON, Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Our increasing use of home automation technology through the Internet of
Things (IoT) has the potential for substantial energy savings and
greenhouse gas emissions reductions, according to a new study released
today by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)TM. The
study The
Energy Savings Potential of Home Automation Technology
finds
widespread adoption of home automation products such as temperature,
circuit and lighting control, if used for energy savings purposes, could
collectively avoid up to 100 million tons of CO2 emissions
and reduce total residential primary energy consumption by as much as 10
percent – that savings is more than consumer electronics’ share of
residential primary energy consumption (8.4 percent) according to a
separate CTA
study
.

“This research proves the innovation consumer technology delivers into
our hands and homes through the Internet of Things can significantly
reduce our carbon footprint – whether that’s the household energy we use
on our own or the carbon emissions our country produces,” said Gary
Shapiro, president and CEO, Consumer Technology Association. “With the
touch of a screen or button, we can control and manage our homes more
easily and effectively than ever – from virtually anywhere in the world
– and enjoy all the cost savings and environmental benefits consumer
technology offers.”

CTA’s study reports the overall U.S. technical energy savings potential
from several individual approaches ranges from 0.3 to 1.1 quadrillion
BTUs (quads) of primary energy consumption, or from one to five percent
of total residential primary energy consumption. The study’s findings,
which represent the best current estimates of achievable savings,
highlight several areas where home automation could deliver energy
savings, including connected thermostats, HVAC zoning, and control of
window shades, circuits and lighting.

“This study is the first of its kind – showing how our increased use of
several types of connected devices and systems can decrease our overall
home energy use,” said Douglas Johnson, vice president of technology
policy, CTA. “While the concept and practice of home automation have
been around for decades, the continuous reduction of installation costs
means more and more consumers are able to access and benefit from this
technology. And home automation tech delivers potential benefits to
utilities as well, such as enhanced demand response capabilities and the
intelligent segmentation of homes – both of which would eventually lower
consumers’ costs.”

Actual energy savings depends strongly on how users choose to control
their automated household devices and equipment, the study found.
Intelligent features, when activated, can enable greater savings. Smart
thermostats, for instance, can learn when specific rooms in a home do
and do not need conditioning to save energy without sacrificing comfort.
Savings could be even higher when automated devices are used together,
as with whole-home control.

Sales of many home automation technologies are projected to rise over
the next few years, according to CTA’s U.S.
Consumer Technology Sales and Forecasts
. Consumer trends have
shown that the primary motivator behind purchasing automation products,
such as smart blinds, thermostats and light fixtures, has been for
convenience, security and/or entertainment. The study found that further
increasing the marketability of these products to homeowners by
promoting their energy savings potential could lead to more energy
savings nationwide.

The study was conducted by the Fraunhofer
Center for Sustainable Energy Systems CSE
and commissioned by CTA.
Fraunhofer CSE identified 17 candidate home automation approaches and
selected five to study in depth, based on initial energy savings
estimates and feedback from members of CTA’s TechHome Division, energy
efficiency program administrators and developers. The findings
recommended pursuing targeted field studies of sufficient scale to
refine these energy savings estimates, especially for approaches whose
savings depend more strongly on occupant behavior. The entire study, The
Energy Savings Potential of Home Automation Technology
,
is
available online.

Through CTA’s website GreenerGadgets.org,
consumers can calculate their tech devices’ approximate home energy
usage and find tips to help reduce their energy costs. For a
comprehensive look at the consumer technology industry’s ongoing efforts
toward improved overall sustainability and efficiency, please see The
Consumer Technology Association 2015 Sustainability Report
.

About Consumer Technology Association:

Consumer Technology Association (CTA)TM is the trade
association representing the $287 billion U.S. consumer technology
industry. More than 2,200 companies – 80 percent are small businesses
and startups; others are among the world’s best known brands – enjoy the
benefits of CTA membership including policy advocacy, market research,
technical education, industry promotion, standards development and the
fostering of business and strategic relationships. The Consumer
Technology Association also owns and produces CES® – the world’s
gathering place for all who thrive on the business of consumer
technology. Profits from CES are reinvested into CTA’s industry services.

About Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy Systems CSE:

Fraunhofer CSE is an applied R&D laboratory dedicated to building
tomorrow’s energy future today. Our staff’s expertise in solar
photovoltaics, smart energy-efficient buildings, and grid technologies
provides a platform for deeply integrating distributed energy resources
through collaboration with private companies, government entities, and
academic institutions. Fraunhofer CSE is one of seven centers of
Fraunhofer USA, a 501(c)(3) non-profit subsidiary of Fraunhofer
Gesellschaft, Europe’s largest contract R&D organization.

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