The Democratization of Energy

May 29th, 2012 by scottgpeer

Traditionally individuals have been at the mercy of broader forces when it comes to energy use. The struggle between nations over energy supplies has even been called “the Great Game” in a comparison to the struggles between the English and Russian empires over Central Asia a hundred years ago. However, new technologies which allow individuals to understand and manage their electricity consumption are enabling them to become players in the game.

Although it is easy to view the new technologies as just more gadgets, they in fact are creating a transformation in the energy industry that will cause fundamental changes. As the hardware and software become less expensive and easier to use, they will become more and more common. The users will be able to control their energy use with minimal effort, and will be able to cut energy use in predictable ways. Most energy users today only know how much electricity they use by the month, which is like a car that has a dashboard with an odometer and nothing else. New energy efficiency technologies allow energy consumption to be a conscious act, and as a result individuals will begin to take control and democratize energy.

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