UK residents 'increasingly energy efficient'
People in the UK are becoming increasingly energy efficient, with the country's energy usage having fallen significantly over the past five years.
The Energy Saving Trust has analysed data from the Department for Energy and Climate Change on behalf of BBC News, finding that the average UK resident now uses ten per cent less electricity than they did five years ago.
Reasons for this drop in energy usage could include improvements in home insulation measures, better education about the benefits of living a greener lifestyle and the growing popularity of energy-saving items, such as LED light bulbs. In fact, the average bulb in 2013 used 29 per cent less electricity than in 2008.
The analysis also shows that energy-efficient improvements to household equipment such as fridge freezers can save a home 73 per cent more energy than the same appliance 20 years ago, further contributing to a sharp drop in wastage.
Furthermore, figures from the Trust show that installing solid wall insulation in a detached property can help to prevent 1,900 kg of carbon dioxide emissions from entering the environment, while potentially saving the homeowners up to £460 in heating bills.
Research from the UK Committee on Climate Change suggested that if energy savings had not been made over the past decade, the average household would have seen a £165 rise in its annual spend on energy.
It is worth noting that despite developments in technology and a greater range of smart devices using more electricity, energy use has still fallen, highlighting the effectiveness of energy-efficient home improvements.
Greg Shreeve of the Energy Saving Trust commented: "This demonstrates how well-designed and targeted regulation can have a significant impact on our energy consumption.
"Investment in energy efficiency can lead to much wider economic benefits, such as job creation and even improved health."
However, Joanna Wade from the Association for the Conversation said that while the drop in energy use is "very good news", the government's contribution to this decrease has been somewhat insignificant.
Ms Wade suggests that "a proper strategy" is needed to reduce energy usage further and ensure households can easily access energy-efficient home improvements, such as better insulation.
"We have a long way to go," she concluded.