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Impacts of new technologies on household electricity demand: From an individual household, a community, and a national perspective

In the last century, humans have invented and implemented numerous technological advancements, which have not only brought comfort and security to our lives, they have also opened up possibilities which were previously implausible e.g. long-distance transport and communication. The main energy sources to power these advancements have been fossil-fuels; mainly gas, coal and oil, causing side effects such as an increase in greenhouse gas emissions. The consequences of this increase are difficult to predict; however, it is likely to warm the earth, which could have severe outcomes e.g. a rise in sea levels. There has been a global movement to respond adequately to reduce human-produced greenhouse gas emissions. As part of this movement, the New Zealand government has proposed an energy strategy to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions, which includes decreasing the nation’s dependence on fossil fuels, and increasing renewable electricity generation to 90% by 2025. In New Zealand, the residential sector accounts for a large share of the national electricity demand, and vehicles driven in the country are predominantly fossil-fuelled. Therefore, the electrification of vehicles, and the inclusion of new technologies at a household level can have a significant impact on New Zealand achieving its energy strategy goals. The aim of this research, thus, is to provide a greater understanding of the impact electric vehicles, solar PV systems, and home energy storage systems within the household can have on electricity demand at a household, community, and national level. As part of this research: (1) a simulation tool, capable of calculating fine-grained (hourly) power output for solar panels at any location in New Zealand was created; (2) two small scale quantitative surveys were conducted to gather electricity usage data for New Zealand households; (3) a web interface allowing for a comparison of energy usage data from 32 different households was developed; (4) a modelling approach, capable of generating half hourly household electricity consumption data was constructed; and (5) a web-based tool, capable of simulating the impact of solar PV, an electric vehicle, and a home energy storage system, on electricity consumption was created.
Type of thesis
Suppers, J. (2018). Impacts of new technologies on household electricity demand: From an individual household, a community, and a national perspective (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/11923
The University of Waikato
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