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Research: Electric Heating for Space and Water Heating is Already Cost-Effective

YijunW CA, United States 0 Ratings 134 Discussions 0 Group posts

Posted by: YijunW

Research: Electric Heating for Space and Water Heating is Already Cost-Effective

The report by Rocky Mountain Institute* found that costs were lower over the life cycle for electrification of space and water heating over fossil-fueled space and water heating, particularly notable for new home construction.

The report compares electric-fueled to fossil-fueled in space and water heating for both new construction and home retrofits in four cities: Oakland, California; Houston, Texas; Providence, Rhode Island; and Chicago. According to the report, seventy million Americans homes and businesses burn natural gas or oil on-site to heat their residential, working spaces, and water, producing 560 million metric tons of carbon dioxide every year (RMI) -- which was roughly one-tenth of United States emission of $5,134 million tons in 2017 (reuters). To reach the “deep decarbonization” goals of 75 percent or greater reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in order to limit the increasing global average temperature to 2°C, the United States of America needs to eliminate most of the carbon dioxide produced by water heaters and furnaces across the states. Electrification of space and water heating aids the cost-effective integration of renewable energy onto the grid (RMI).

The report resonates with Greenbiz's report "State of Green Business Report 2018," which we talked about before in Discussion "Sustainable Trend: The Electrification of Everything." During the discussion, I said that as we are entering into a decarbonization transformation, our technology substantially improves. Price of clean energy is becoming more and more affordable. With natural-gas furnaces and water heaters no longer serve as a cheap and competitive source, the decarbonization of residential and commercial buildings is surging. Clean alternatives, electrically heated sources and the concept of all-electric buildings will dominate the market, promising a green energy source for building developers, investors, and the communities (Greenbiz).

Furthermore, the report reinforces the findings of an earlier NRDC study “America’s Clean Energy Frontier: The Pathway to a Safer Climate Future,” which indicates broad replacement of fossil fuels to zero-carbon electrification of transportation, residential and commercial buildings, and industry is an achievable and cost-effective action needed to cut U.S. GHG emissions by 80 percent by 2050. The study forecasts that zero-carbon electricity will supply up to 45 percent of U.S. energy by 2050, up from 20 percent today.

Both the NRDC report and the RMI report highlight the cost-effective benefits of using electricity from an escalating clean grid as well as an important but often omitted fact-- It is a crucial path for elevating the global climate impact.

* RMI is an independent and nonpartisan nonprofit founded in 1982. Its report "The Economics of Electrifying Buildings" is referred in this discussion.
To read more, please visit:
Sustainable Trend: The Electrification of Everything
https://bit.ly/2NVmJeX
Pierre Delforge
NRDC
https://www.nrdc.org/experts/pierre-delforge/clean-electric-heating-already-cost-effective-many?utm_source=tw&utm_medium=tweet&utm_content=socialmedia
Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/article/usa-natgas-eia-steo/update-1-u-s-carbon-emissions-seen-at-25-year-low-in-2017-idUSL1N1J311B

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