• Using Energy Interventions to Drive Down Energy Consumption

      Hampton, Paul; Perez, Pablo A; Stuart, Robert; Young, Neil (Conference on Construction in the 21st Century (CITC- Committee), 2017-03-05)
      The reduction of carbon emissions to the atmosphere is widely accepted as a measure to mitigate one of the greatest challenges facing the world, global warming. One of the major contributors identified as contributing to this phenomenon is the domestic market. The domestic buildings are considered to play a significant role as they represent 30 percent of the UK’s energy use and produce 15 percent of the carbon dioxide emissions. As part of a UK intervention, studies have suggested behavioural change among housing occupants could be one of the key measures in the drive to reduce the use of energy. This is also expected to decrease the levels of fuel poverty. The aim of this research was to evaluate the effectiveness of the energy advice programme delivered by a UK housing association: Wolverhampton Homes, to tenants interested in energy saving and thereby reducing their fuel expenditure. The methodology incorporated a series of qualitative semi-structured interviews to three different householder groups: a control non-assisted group, a regularly assisted group and the last group supported by energy saving monitoring devices. It was determined that occupants receiving assistance are more likely to realign their behaviour and reduce energy usage within their property if presented with clear a non-technical guidance. Furthermore, the use of monitoring devices as an easy way to visualise energy consumption aided the programme in enhancing the engagement of the tenants in energy saving behaviour patterns. The findings confirm a positive approach that UK local authorities and Housing Associations can adopt in order to reduce energy consumption through influencing occupants behavioural change, promoting energy saving within domestic properties and reducing fuel expenditure.