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Smart, Energy-Saving Homes: What's Stopping Us?


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Smart, energy-saving homes utilise network connectivity, big data and powerful data processing. They can manage and automate services such as lighting, heating/cooling and washing in order to reduce energy consumption and provide load flexibility to the grid. Despite recent gains in building envelope and appliance efficiency, further opportunities remain to improve whole-building system efficiency through smart homes. However, there are significant barriers:
• High costs and unclear benefits: smart devices cost more and suffer
from a lack of consumer confidence about their benefits.
• Privacy, trust and security: consumers are concerned about misuse of data in the cloud, and hacking of data and devices.
• Complexity and technology risk: smart homes involve new and complex technologies which many consumers fear may not work as intended and are difficult to operate. Problems of interoperability between new and legacy devices are common and this tends to increase consumer concerns.

This webinar will examine these barriers and suggest a number of policy solutions. It is presented by the EDNA Annex (Electronic Devices and Networks Annex - of the IEA’s 4E Technology Collaboration Programme.

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Smart, Energy-Saving Homes: What's Stopping Us?

  1. 1. Smart, Energy-Saving Homes: What's Stopping Us? Steven Beletich, Operating Agent for IEA-4E/EDNA Users TCP Webinar, 21 May 2020
  2. 2. 2 With Thanks to nUsers TCP, in particular Hans De Keulenaer nVida Rozite, author of Smart Homes Case Study n As consultant to EDNA in 2017
  3. 3. 3 Contents nIntroduction to the topic nBarriers and potential policy solutions nConclusion
  4. 4. 4 Introduction to the Topic
  5. 5. 5 IEA-4E / EDNA Annex of IEA- 4E TCP Technical analysis & policy guidance Efficiency of connected devices & systems Austria, Australia, Canada, Denmark, European Comm, France, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, USA Operating Agent = Steven Beletich
  6. 6. 6 Energy Implications of Connectivity Energy Savings • Intelligent efficiency • Demand flexibility Energy Cost • Network standby
  7. 7. 7 Intelligent Efficiency Operation of a system of devices so that they respond to changing conditions of the external environment, in order to maximise energy savings
  8. 8. 8 Opportunity: Intelligent Efficiency nOpportunities in Residential Buildings Technologies Benefit Savings range Smart thermostats Heating and cooling can be controlled remotely 5-20% of heating/cooling energy use Smart zoning Allows individual rooms or zones to be heated/cooled to specific temperatures at specific times 10% of heating/cooling energy use Smart lighting Adjusts in accordance to occupancy and/or light levels 1-10% of whole home energy use Smart window control Controls the amount of light and can block heat or cold 10-20% heating/cooling energy use + lighting energy use savings Home energy monitoring system Provides users with information about how energy is used and provides recommendations or prompts 4-7% of whole home energy use Smart HEMS (Home energy management system) Provides ability to control energy use (incl. remotely) and can optimise energy use on basis of behaviour 8-20% of whole home energy use Smart home Combination of smart home technologies that provide measurement, monitoring, displays, management, control automation, zoning etc. Up to 30% of whole home energy use IEA presentation - Digitalisation Opportunities for Energy Efficiency, 23 May 2019
  9. 9. 9 Demand Flexibility Changes in electricity usage by end-use customers from their normal consumption patterns in response to changing market conditions Source: Navigant Consulting aka Guidehouse LLP
  10. 10. 10 Opportunity: Demand FlexibilityThe Future of Cooling in China Recommendations to unlock energy-efficient cooling Delivering on action plans for sustainable air conditioning Figure 45. Illustrative profile of a July weekday cooling load in China in 2030 using responsive devices IEA 2019.All rightsreserved. Notes: GWh =gigawatt-hours. Electricityload profilesarederived using informationfromdailyprofiles estimatedwithbuildingsurveydata from TsinghuaUniversityBERC. Additionalcooling energydemand isa result oflowerACperformanceandoperationimprovementsto 2050, weakerbuilding envelopeimprovementsand differenttemperatureprofilesbecauseofhigherenergysectoremissionsasintheBaseline 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 00:00 02:00 04:00 06:00 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:00 GWh Additional cooling in the Baseline Scenario Non-residential Residential Cooling demand with smart devices
  11. 11. 11 What is a Smart, Energy-Saving Home?
  12. 12. 12 Need Other Infrastructure nSensors nHEMS / hub nUser interface nSmart meter nConnection to the outside world nCloud services / big data / AI
  13. 13. 13 Barriers and Potential Policy Solutions
  14. 14. 14 Barriers nHigh Costs nUnclear benefits nComplexity & technology risk nPrivacy, trust & security
  15. 15. 15 High Costs n Smart devices cost more (USD) n Dumb vs smart thermostat: $25 vs $250 n Dumb vs smart lamp: $5 vs $25 n Smart home infrastructure costs $ n Comms links, HEMS, etc. n Potential policy solutions n Subsidies n Regulate/facilitate market conditions which can deliver subsidies n E.g. via demand flexibility
  16. 16. 16 Unclear Benefits nEnergy costs not significant for some households nUncertainty / mistrust regarding benefits n Lack of understanding of how energy savings occur n Energy savings can be over-stated by vendors n Distrust of these claims n Lack of independent verification n This also applies to the benefits of also comfort, security, etc.
  17. 17. 17 Potential Policy Solutions nStandards & methodologies n Measure benefits n Transparent & comparable info n Independent verification nDemonstration projects nConsumer promotion & labels
  18. 18. 18 Complexity and Technology Risk nInvolve new & inherently complex technologies nDifficult to operate nLack of interoperability n“Vendor lock-in” nPace of evolution nVendors going out of business
  19. 19. 19 Complexity and Technology Risk (cont) nWireless setup is complex & unstable nUnstable internet connection nSoftware glitches n UK 2017, software update caused smart TVs to stop working for several days nUnending firmware/software updates
  20. 20. 20 nOpen protocols for interoperability n e.g. ISO/IEC 21823: Interoperability for IoT Systems nStandards for comms reliability nBe transparent about issues, solutions & results nEncourage good design of user interfaces, etc. Potential Policy Solutions
  21. 21. 21 Privacy, Trust and Security n Consumer concerns n Misuse of data n Aggregation of data from multiple sources n Hacking of data and devices n Potential policy solutions: n Cybersecurity protocols, e.g. (North America) n NIST reliability and cybersecurity protocols n North American Electric Reliability Corporation’s Critical Infrastructure Protection standards n Effective regulations for privacy n Ensure privacy policies clearly stated & understood
  22. 22. 22 Conclusion
  23. 23. 23 Conclusions nSmart, energy-saving homes can provide significant benefits for households and the grid n Early days for demand response programmes n4 groups of barriers n High costs n Unclear benefits n Complexity & technology risk n Privacy, trust & security
  24. 24. 24 Conclusions (cont) nPolicy makers could be active in this area nPolicy responses need to be multi-dimensional n Need an over-arching vision & engagement of stakeholders n e.g. standards and approaches that ensure relevant devices are “demand response ready” as well as “smart home ready” (these should ideally be the same thing) nStrong case for international cooperation
  25. 25. 25 Thank You n Contact n EDNA publications n Smart homes case study & policy brief n n n Webinar 2 June: Smart, Energy-Saving Consumer Devices n n Related study: n Upcoming studies n Roadmap for Consumer Devices to Participate in Demand Flexibility n Energy Applications Within IoT and Digitalisation Strategies n “Plug and Play” Devices (under consideration)