As power consumption falls, it’s time for sober second thoughts
Here’s an interesting article from the Wall Street Journal (via the Indianapolis Star) that talks about an “unexpected drop” in electricity consumption across the United States that can’t be explained by the housing crisis or general economic conditions alone. It’s a strange article, in a way, because it doesn’t even mention the word “conservation” and reads like there’s some kind of X-Files mystery to investigate. There is passing reference to customers maybe using less energy because they’re being told to, but it’s hardly held up as the biggest explanation. “Something fundamental is going on,” says Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers. He just doesn’t know why… weird.
Anyway, the same strange phenomenon is happening in Ontario. The difference is that our electricity planners are blaming it on the downturn and not giving much credit to conservation efforts. But with a $26 billion spending program to build more nuclear, at some point the province’s government will have to justify such spending if electricity use continues to decline.