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4614.0.55.002 - Energy in Focus: Energy Efficiency of Australian Homes, Apr 2010  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/04/2010  First Issue
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USE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY IN AUSTRALIAN HOMES


The type and amount of energy used in the home has a considerable impact on the production of greenhouse gas emissions. Australians can help to combat increasing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the amount of energy they use in their homes and by using energy from renewable and green sources. In 2006–07, electricity generated from renewable sources made up only 3.6% of electricity generated for industry and households.



1.1 FUELS USED IN AUSTRALIAN ELECTRICITY GENERATION FOR INDUSTRY AND HOUSEHOLDS,
2006–07

PJ
Share
%

Thermal
Black coal
1,379
56.4
Brown coal
671
27.4
Oil
25
1.0
Gas
284
11.6
Total thermal
2,360
96.4
Renewables
Hydro
52
2.1
Wind and solar photovoltaic
23
0.9
Biomass
5
0.2
Biogas
7
0.3
Total renewables
87
3.6

Note: Figures are for energy input, not output.
Source: Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics, 2009, Energy in Australia 2009.
Australians have been endeavouring to become more energy efficient in their homes. Despite these efforts, household electricity use per person rose 19% throughout the period 2001–02 to 2006–07. Larger dwelling sizes, decreasing average household size, more appliances and IT equipment per household as well as the increased use of heaters and coolers, have contributed to this increase.



1.2 AUSTRALIAN HOUSEHOLD ELECTRICITY USE,
2001–02 to 2006–07



The most common ways that people can use renewable energy in the home include installing solar photovoltaic systems that convert sunlight directly into energy, using solar hot water systems and signing up to a GreenPower scheme that provides electricity generated from renewable energy sources.

Solar energy was used by 7% of Australian households for heating water in 2008, nearly double the use in 2005 when 4% had solar hot water. The increase was noticeable in all states and territories between 2005 and 2008. A factor in this increase may be the introduction of State and Federal Government schemes offering rebates on the installation of solar hot water systems. The use of solar power for hot water systems doubled between 2005 and 2008 in New South Wales (2.5% in 2005 to 5% in 2008) and increased in Victoria (1% in 2005 to 3% in 2008), albeit from small bases. More than half the households in the Northern Territory (54% in 2008) used solar energy to heat water, up from 42% in 2005. More than one in five (21%) households in Western Australia had solar hot water.



1.3 HOUSEHOLDS THAT USED SOLAR HOT WATER HEATING,
2002, 2005 and 2008

Households that used solar hot water heating, 2002, 2005 and 2008


More than half of all households (52%) were aware of GreenPower in 2008 (including 5% already paying for GreenPower). This was a large increase compared with 2005 and 1999 when 29% and 19% respectively were aware of GreenPower. One-third of Australian households were willing to support GreenPower by paying extra, compared to 23% in 2005.



1.4 HOUSEHOLDS THAT WERE WILLING TO PAY EXTRA FOR GREENPOWER,
1999, 2002, 2005 and 2008

Households that were willing to pay extra for GreenPower, 1999, 2002, 2005 and 2008



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